If you make your living in finance, you understand the concept of alpha. You know just how important that edge can be — probably from hard-won personal experience.
Maybe your edge isn’t what it used to be. Or maybe you’re having trouble widening it. Or maybe you’re feeling pretty confident about where you’re at but worried about what the future might bring.
Whatever the case, you need accurate, comprehensive sources of information and intelligence to stay one step ahead of your competitors and, if you serve retail or institutional clients directly, to keep them happy too. Because you don’t need to be told that this industry is unforgiving.
What follows is a list of seven lesser-known (or simply overlooked) resources for financial professionals and sophisticated investors. Find out which (if not all) could work for you.
PEHub is one of the best digital publications focused on private companies and private company investors. Use it to find information about personnel moves, investment rounds, product launches, and other activities that aren’t covered in the mainstream financial press. It’s an easy way to stay one step ahead of fellow investors who rely on better-known resources like Bloomberg’s private company directory — a fantastic database, but one that lacks the breadth of news and depth of analysis of PEHub and its ilk.
The Barron’s name is familiar to seasoned financial professionals. Perhaps you already have a subscription.
Barron’s makes this list despite being relatively well-known because it’s increasingly overlooked. When there was less competition (and fragmentation) in financial media, it was a go-to on par with Investors’ Business Daily and the Wall Street Journal. Not so today, as mass-market resources like Yahoo Finance and relative upstarts like Seeking Alpha gain prominence.
That’s a shame because Barron’s remains a second-to-none source not just of general financial news but of second-order insight that’s consistently high in quality and often difficult to find elsewhere. Its columnists know their domains through and through, and the curation is excellent: Even if you don’t agree with it, you can at least trust the perspectives you find here.
3. Morning Brew
Whether Morning Brew is “lesser known” at this point is debatable. It’s one of the most popular financial newsletters around, with millions of active subscribers. But it remains something of an underdog next to blue-chip financial newsletters from the likes of the New York Times, Bloomberg, and the Wall Street Journal. Add it to your morning routine — it’ll take you all of five minutes — and get critical context for your day.
4. Paladin Registry
Paladin Registry (full name: Paladin Research and Registry) connects retail investors with fiduciary financial advisors. Though its mission is more aligned with consumers than with financial professionals, Paladin is an increasingly vital digital directory for independent advisors struggling to compete with larger wealth management firms and low-cost automated investment platforms.
And because Paladin holds prospective investors’ hands as they choose their advisors, your listing ROI is much higher than you can reasonably expect from FINRA’s BrokerCheck resource and/or less well-curated private resources.
Benzinga is a private digital publication focusing on all things investing, from basic definitions and concepts to advanced trading techniques and company analysis. Like other digital investing publications, it’s a pretty lively (and noisy) space, and some self-curation is required to get the most out of it. But that’s par for the course for seasoned investors.
6. Seeking Alpha
Seeking Alpha is another private digital publication focused broadly on investing. Like Benzinga, Seeking Alpha features lots of noise amid the good stuff, but there’s plenty of value to unlock here if you’re willing to put in the effort. Seeking Alpha is more personality-driven as well and has curation tools that make it easy to build a personalized reading list. And while pricey, the premium plans come off well — Seeking Alpha gates most of its advanced or ahead-of-the-curve content.
Zacks has its own online trading brokerage and financial advisory arm, but it’s also an active publisher on par with Seeking Alpha and Benzinga. It really shines for sector-specific news and analysis — this oil and gas industry news page is representative — but you’ll find plenty of individual stock and fund picks here as well.
Build Your Financial Reading List Today
These seven resources can help you maintain and perhaps increase your edge in one of the toughest games around. They’re not the only ones you could and perhaps should use for this purpose — but collectively, they’re a good base to build on. Here’s to staying one step ahead and loving every minute of it.