Monday, September 7, 2015

Most Used Tools of HBS and Less-Expensive Alternatives


I am not an HBS MBA nor a faculty member. However I spent a fair amount of time at the Baker Library during my time at Harvard and noticed excessive usage of databases and financial data vendors. Here are some practical observations:

  • Bloomberg Terminal
    • Designed for real-time market data; not the best for historical data analysis. 
    • I think it is overvalued by most MBAs. 
    • Has Excel-Addon.
  • Capital IQ
    • Data is much cleaner and well-organized than Bloomberg. Nice for value investing. 
    • Offers Excel-Addon as well.
  • Thomson ONE
  • Factiva
    • Provides access to more than 32'000 sources (such as newspapers, journals, magazines, television and radio transcripts, photos, etc.) from nearly every country worldwide in 28 languages, including more than 600 continuously updated newswires.
  • Avention (formerly known as OneSource)
  • Hoovers
  • Preqin
  • ProQuest
  • Economist Intelligence Unit

Less expensive financial data services for promising analysts:
  • FetchXL
  • I-Metrix
  • Morningstar Premium Subscription
  • XBRL
  • YCharts

Note: HBS = Harvard Business School