So, where do I find stories about stocks?

A leetle problem. Doing a test run on writing stories about stocks. Obviosly I know the generalities.

But the specifics. How to find 20 a month to write about?

What I can’t do is look at the normal stock trading boards. Nor pick up from the HL newsletters and all that. But I still need those 20 stocks a month to write something about.

If I can find such then it’s worth doing. The actual writing up is near trivial – given how long I’ve been pumping out few hundred word stories it is.

But, umm, sources?

16 thoughts on “So, where do I find stories about stocks?”

  1. Are you looking for the same 20 each month or 20 different ones?

    If the former, pick two each from major industrial areas and follow / compare.

    If latter, maybe try and relate major news stories to how they influence stocks, e.g. strikes, wars, riots, disasters, etc.

  2. A thought; look through the AIC list at the sector specialists, then mooch through their holdings for the underlying firms. Set up searches and alerts as necessary, then you have;

    Underlying firms, investment companies that hold those firms, and you can half inch the ICs’ own reports as a source as well.

  3. The problem is that newsflow for the vast majority of companies is very very limited. It is generally tied around reporting of results which means a deluge of data at certain times of the year followed by a few months where nothing is said. Try going to the bulletin boards such as advfn. Some companies have a coterie of fanatical followers bickering about rumours. Others only come alive every six months

  4. Association of Investment Companies, used to be the AITC. For the US, pull the same trick with Morningstar or Reuters/Lipper, plus the SEC’s Edgar. For added fun, there’s the muni bond funds as well.

    On Diogenes point; not really. A fair few firms will sling any old rubbish up on their websites these days, or issue press releases at the drop of a hat, so news flow isn’t quite the problem it was.

  5. Ducky, how much research do you do? I’m currently looking into 10 AIM companies and the only news on their websites are annual reports. No news whatsoever apart from appointment of new directors. Genuinely interested in any example you can provide of a company posting interesting stuff on its website

  6. Dio; not much these days, or not as frequently, at least. Though I used to get paid for this sort of rubbish.

    It’s likely that Tim’s problem is different from yours; he needs to define a universe of firms that will generate enough news such that he can whack out a couple of hundred words within 20 minutes or so, possibly once or twice a day; he doesn’t have to do a proper job on each one and take a few days over eight sides of A4 (charts are useful, big ones, and lots of them; also leading) – he’s not getting paid for that.

    As far as his audience goes; they’re probably not looking for that much detail either, so possibly less experienced or, er, sophisticated. And yer top firms are wildly over broked, so the small companies effect is going to be handy. So, run through the holdings of some sector specialists, to get lesser known names, that have already been pre-filtered by those managers. And those managers already publish regular updates, and have been known to be quite willing to talk their own book, given half the chance.

    And you don’t have to rely on the official news sources at all. The customers of those firms can put their own PR releases out. Use LinkedIn for hires below board level. There’s an awful lot of content generated by specialist b2b publishers – stuff leaks out of their paywalls, and industry associations do love a good awards bash.

    Obviously, the smaller the firm, the harder it gets, which is why you use the funds – they will rarely invest in firms that are too small in the first place. For AIM, hunt around the VCTs and local rags.

    Usual warning; if you are that dependent on actual news flow, you could easily fall prone to over-trading in an already thin market.

    Very old example; a small firm that was pursuing a case against 3M in the US courts, something about IP in post-it notes. Took several years to run up to the highest level, but they won. That news was written up first by a local rag.

  7. Dittoes to DocBud and Gamecock. Web pages that highlight individual stocks (*those you can get for free) usually exist for private benefit. (Buy these shares! it will make mine go up!) And it won’t really be good reading to follow you through the financials of a company picked at random. It might be very good reading to take a news story and follow its leads through the company balance sheet. Example, the Grenfell Tower fire, the business that provided the flammable cladding is now owned by Arconic, whose liability is either absurdly limited or totally open-ended depending on which law you read. Arconic talking about spinning off that part of the business; is it a tar baby? if so, who would buy it? etc.

  8. Dunno.

    Might be fun to create a program in R that tracks a whole bunch o stocks, and points out the ones it finds “interesting” according to the criteria you built in. Then you can dig into those with any public info and wriet ’em up. Have the program keep a database of say 100 stocks, throwing away the least interesting ten every week, or something….

  9. In the semiconductor industry, the manufacturers are constantly releasing info about new products, technologies, and equipment sales. There are also many specialist newsletters, most free, that compile these and sometimes provide analysis. Signing up for them, you may have to say you are purchasing agent for a tech firm, but usually they are happy to sign up anyone. You can end up with dozens of stocks from penny stocks to Fortune 500 companies.

  10. @Tim W

    High yield stock(s) in a sector – why is yield “too” high? Price below NAV – why?

    Or throw 20 darts at FT and write

    However, without hours of research per stock, what is your angle? CFO is hot totty, HR led by Harridan, CEO is a trannie?

  11. London Stock exchange RNS service gives you lots of information about companies news items but every one one of them is a press release so you need to know how to search through them for useful tidbits.
    Ignore the FTSE-100, the world is deluged with stories about them. Likewise some of the FTSE-250 that are household names.
    So lesser-known FTSE-250 stocks and small-Cap.
    Register yourself with LSE website and construct yourself several portfolios of a dozen or a score of mid-cap and small-cap stocks. Each day look at the portfolios and LSE will supply a list of 10/12 new/recent news items on each portfolio [that’s why you need lots of portfolios, or you’ll miss news items if there are more than a dozen since you last looked]. Scan the price reaction and the reports to pick out stories that are interesting and have (or obviously should have) caused a price movement.
    Example: National Express trading update last week featured the success of its Spanish subsidiary (ALSA) in Morocco winning a major contract in Casablanca doubling the size of the Moroccan operation (making it the largest bus operator in Morocco suggesting that it will reap economies of scale), and further growth in the USA school bus operations. ALSA is already bigger than the UK operations in both revenue and profit terms so analysts are revising upwards their forecasts for next year.
    It takes some time to pick and set up a dozen portfolios on the LSE website but will only take a few minutes a day to look through them to see if there are any interesting news items or any dramatic price moves that will provide a handle for a story – rather more time to look at each news item or price move to decide whether or not you *want* to write about it.
    Contact me if you want to discuss in more detail.

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