Like the screening tools in other databases, it starts of with all securities it has (Security Universe, today 654012 matches), then begins to refine the screening with the currently active primary quotes (Actively Traded Primary Security of Company, today 67292 matches). You can add further criteria in the amber box across the middle of the screen; simply type and select the auto-complete entry. In this example, I typed “United Kingdom” to select Country of Domicile (1808 matches), then “Technology” to select the Sector (141 matches).
If you want to use this list elsewhere (for example in Datastream), it would be wise to add an extra column, ISIN, to use as a company identifier. (Click in the amber bar across the top of the screen labelled Add Column, type ISIN Number, select the first match and press Enter.)
Finally, to export the table to Excel, click on the red menu bar option Output > Excel > All Securities, which will automatically open in Excel after you accept any warning messages about file formats.
A fake tweet from the hacked Twitter account of Associated Press caused a sharp drop in US markets in afternoon trading (on 23 April 2013). (BBC Business News – Fake terror tweet hits US markets)
You can see the effect on the market using Bloomberg Professional to chart intra day data for an index (S&P 500 below) or individual share.
Bloomberg News also has a report “Associated Press Twitter Account Hacked in Market Moving Attack” (Bloomberg News April 24 05:01).
We should probably not consider it surprising that social media has the power to influence markets, nor that there is a tendency for traders to react first and they check the authenticity of information.
Bloomberg Professional has a function TWTR (Twitter Filter Builder) that allows users to build a twitter filter according to how they want to monitor the market – including seeing what is trending on Bloomberg Social Velocity (BSV).
Search for “Twitter” on Bloomberg DOCS and one document offered is “Chapter 3: Lessons Learned from Social Media” (Halloran and Thies, 2012).
Halloran, M. and Thies, C. (2012) “Chapter 3: Lessons Learned from Social Media” from The Social Media Handbook for Financial Advisors: How to Use LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to Build and Grow Your Business. Available at: Bloomberg Professional Service [online subscription service] (Accessed 24 April 2013).
Bloomberg Professional is such a large finanical information system that you can always learn something from other users.
The Lippincott Library Datapoints blog has recently included a selection of posts on Bloomberg highlights to “show off some of Bloomberg’s most interesting features”:
Bloomberg’s Mapping Module (BMAP), Supply Chain Analysis (SPLC), World Market Capitalization (WCAP)
Industry Analysis (BI), Bloomberg Career Center (JOBS), World Stock Exchanges (EPR)
Bloomberg Social Media Alert, Private Company Information, Analyst Reports (BRC)
The Datastream Navigator gives quick access to the key equity indices worldwide.
Select Explore – Equity Indices – Benchmarks at a Glance
The top results are worldwide and regional and then there are key indices for specific countries.
This list of benchmark equity indices can be downloaded into Excel using the icon at the top right.
Bloomberg Professional also gives easy access to key indices through functions WEI (World Equity Indices) and EMEQ (Emerging markets equity indices).
Online resources (for if you don’t have access to Datastream or Bloomberg Professional)
- World Stock Indexes – Bloomberg.com
- Market Indices – Reuters.com
- Major World Indices – Yahoo! Finance
- World Stock Market Indices world-stock-exchanges.net
One observation is that a benchmark index may change over time. The benchmark for Italy used to be the Milan MIB 30 Index but this has been replaced by FTSE MIB Index, and for Malaysia the KLSE Composite Index has been replaced by FTSE Bursa Malaysia Klci.
There were two stories on the BBC Business News recently that provided a reminder of how deals generate news because they result from companies’ strategic decisions.
This news story covers a company going from Public to Private, and therefore delisting from a stock exchange, the reverse of an IPO (Initial Public Offering).
This illustrates why databases like Thomson One Banker and Bloomberg Professional track deals from when they are rumoured or announced (not just when they become effective). In Dell’s case there has been significant news coverage about the company’s strategic options now that PCs are seen to be in decline.
This news story covers an acquisition. The surprise for me was that this is one US company taking over another. Although when I checked on Bloomberg Professional Virgin Media has 100% of its turnover in the UK, it has chosen to be a US company Virgin Media Inc, listed on the NASDAQ exchange.
Using the FAME database of UK companies you can check that Virgin Media Limited (registered no 02591237) is a subsidiary of Virgin Media Inc.
Bloomberg‘s Mergers & Acquistions (MA) function highlights the current largest deals – on 20 Feb 2013 these are HJ Heinz Co, Virgin Media Inc, and Dell Inc. Bloomberg Industries (BI) can be used to investigate industry trends including the expected impact of large deals, e.g. BI CATVE (Cable and Satellite Europe) has the Feb 05 news item “Liberty Fortifying in Europe May Boost Broadband, TV Competition” and a range of related industry data.
When looking at the performance of a share (stock) or index for the year 2012 you will often see a graph that has the basic return and a higher total/cumulative return, which includes the reinvestment of dividends.
Illustrating with the FTSE 100 and data from Thomson Reuters Datastream:
- FTSE100 on 31/12/2011 – Price Index (PI) is 5572.28 – Return Index (RI) is 3770.37
- FTSE100 on 31/12/2012 – Price Index (PI) is 5897.81 – Return Index (RI) is 4146.4
- FTSE100 percentage return for 2012 – basic return is 5.84% – total return is 9.97%
Return Formula: Retit = ( RIit – RIit-1 ) / RIit-1 (multiply by 100 for percentage return)
For Total Return FTSE 100 in 2012 : (4146.4 – 3770.37)/3770.37 = 0.099733 [ 9.97% to two significant digits]
You can get Datastream to calculate this directly using the formula PCH#(FTSE100(RI),1Y) for 31/12/2012 – see previous post Total shareholder return (July 2011)
Illustrating with the Sainsbury (J) and data from Thomson Reuters Datastream (screenshot from Bloomberg Total Return Analysis (TRA) function):
- SBRY on 31/12/2011 – Price adjusted (P) is 302.9 – Return Index (RI) is 11651.27
- SBRY on 31/12/2012 – Price adjusted (P) is 345.1 – Return Index (RI) is 13989.18
- Sainsbury (J) percentage return for 2012 – basic return is 13.93% – total return is 20.07%
For Total Return Sainsburys in 2012 : (13989.18 – 11651.27)/11651.27 = 0.200657 [ 20.07% to two significant digits]
You can get Datastream to calculate this directly using the formula PCH#(SBRY(RI),1Y) for 31/12/2012 – see previous post Total shareholder return (July 2011)
Bloomberg Professional‘s Total Return Analysis (TRA) function provides a number of additional features – for example whether the share dividends are reinvested in Sainsbury’s shares or reinvested for a fixed percentage return.
One of the strengths of Bloomberg Professional is that it provides a great deal of quoted company information allowing you to quickly research a company.
Here we will take Rolls Royce PLC as an example and demonstrate useful information that can be obtained in 15 mins.
- Using Bloomberg’s predictive search we type “Rolls Royce” and we find the Bloomberg ticker if RR/ LN Equity.
- DES (Description function) gives us a summary overview – for example see Bloomberg new interface and new help search (posted Mar 2012)
- BRC (Research by company) gives access to analysts’ reports on the company
- CN (Company News) – news from lots of different providers, including Bloomberg themselves – you can filter: by date, by the news provider, by most popular, or by adding additional search terms.
- GP (Graph prices) – gives a graph of historical closing prices, and trading volume – alter dates to suit and add additional annotations as required. (See below)
Demonstrating to class BMAN20600, it turns out that is all you can do in 15 mins. If you have more time consider FA – fundamentals/accounts, RV – competitors, BI – industry data, and MGMT – management. (In response to a question after the demo - Referencing Bloomberg to follow in another post.)
For more on Bloomberg try:
- Bloomberg – getting started (posted Oct 2012)
- How can I get help using Bloomberg? from Manchester Business Answers 24/7 (FAQ)
For alternatives (so you don’t need to get to a Bloomberg PC)
- Researching a UK company … – (posted Oct 2012) (most resources cover global quoted companies not just UK ones)
- Company Financial Analysis (Global Companies) (posted Oct 2011)
Of course 15 mins is just about getting a good start. It does not give you time to carefully consider the company information you have found.
Students and staff can make use of University of Manchester Library resources to browse recent news.
Factiva (from Dow Jones) has a News Pages tab that offers simple access to top newspapers worldwide (most recent two weeks).
Select Global from the drop-down list and you get: The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Australian, The Times and scmp.com (South China Morning Post).
Select United Kingdom and you get: The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Guardian, The Independent, The Wall Street Journal (Europe) and The Economist.
Note: Factiva provides News Pages in several languages in addition to english.
Factiva does include access to The Financial Times but not through the News Pages – you have to use the Search tab and select The Financial Times as your source.
Bloomberg Professionalis an excellent source of financial market news. Useful news functions include:
- TOP <GO> – Today’s top news stories
- READ <GO> – Most read news
- N <GO> – Main news menu
- NSE <GO> – News search engine
- NRR <GO> – News readership rankings
For a list of news databases goto the Business and Management databases page and scroll down to the Databases: Business News section.
Oct 11 2012 was our first Bloomberg training session of this academic year. A good time to focus on tips for newcomers. ( Nov 15 – After several training sessions an update to this post seems appropriate.)
Bloomberg Professional provides such a wealth of financial market information that it can be difficult to know where to start. (Just look at the range of topics in Bloomberg Professional tagged posts in this blog)
The best way to learn Bloomberg Professional is to try it out. Resolve to spend 30 mins exploring the range of information available. Here are 4 alternative starting points:
- Create a share price graph for a company.
See – Bloomberg – example equity graph (Nov 2010) and Bloomberg new interface … (Mar 2012)
- View the world equity indices.
See – Bloomberg – financial market overview (Nov 2011)
Select a specific index to drill down to sectors and individual equities
- View recent news.
Use Bloomberg function READ, select interesting stories and follow the hyper-links to other information.
See Browsing Business News – for free (Nov 2012)
- Explore the help.
Use function BU for access to training videos and documents. Type “HELP” and select from functions offered by the predictive searching. See - How can I get help using Bloomberg? from Manchester Business Answers 24/7 (FAQ) for more options.
Unable to get to a Bloomberg terminal – then there is some information about Bloomberg online.
The theme of the day was the skills that graduates need for a career in finance, and how Bloomberg can help Universities to equip students for the world of work.
One key message is that you don’t have to do a finance/business degree to get a graduate position in finance.
What you do need is to demonstrate enthusiasm for working in the financial sector: your degree can do this but it is by no means the only way. Talent is useful, but remember that there are a large range of types of jobs and correspondingly a large range of appropriate talents. [I would struggle to get most jobs at Bloomberg because they and looking for business fluency in at least 2 languages and I don't think English and Latin would be sufficient.] Finally, recruiters are looking for a willingness to work hard, since no matter how closely your studies match your first job you will always have lots to learn.
How can Bloomberg help?
You can use Bloomberg Professional to demonstrate your interest in a career in finance. Using the same system used by professionals gives you a greater understanding of how professionals monitor financial information, and helps to bridge the gap between academic theory and current practice. Functions BU (Bloomberg University) and CHEAT (Cheatsheets) are good starting points for self-study.
Bloomberg are also promoting the BAT (Bloomberg Assessment Test). This is a standardised test that provides aspiring financial professionals with a measure of their strengths and weaknesses compared with the global average in a range of topics: economics, financial markets, verbal skills, analytical reasoning … There is also an optional feature that allows recruiters to search for matching candidates based on their scores in the various topics.
In terms of using Bloomberg Professional, Bloomberg choose to highlight the Bloomberg Industries (BI) function. This provides users with an industry view including key drivers, company comparisons and industry specific data. (See previous post on Mobile phone industry data on Bloomberg.