November 1st 2007
200+ Awesome Investing Websites
What better way to invest in your future than through the Internet? At any given time of day, and from any Internet connection, you can gain access to investing news and business summaries. You can plan your future through watch lists and online portfolios, as well. You can trade equities, CDs, roll over your IRA and compare fund families – all online and at your convenience. But, with so many sites to choose from, how do you make the right decisions about where to spend your precious time and money?
That’s where we come in – to provide you with the sites that will offer you the most bang for your buck. From analysts to tools for young investors, we’ve broken the sites down into easy-to-manage categories. All categories are in alphabetical order and the sites within those categories also are listed alphabetically. Plus, we’ve added a little commentary to each link to let you know what to expect from these sites.
Analyses | Blogs | Bonds | Brokerages (online) | Charts and Quotes | Comprehensive Sites | Economic Research | Earnings | Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) | Funds | Games | Gold | Hedging | Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) | Market Tools | Message Boards | News | Options | Pre-Defined Scans and Signals | Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) | Stock Research | Stock Screens | Training | Young Investors
Some investors swear by analyst ratings, while other investors cast a skeptical eye on these analyses. Either way, it’s difficult to deny that analysts sway some investors to buy or sell. The following sites offer news about analyst ratings, along with many other tools, so take some time to look around each site.
Track up to 500 stocks simultaneously across multiple portfolios. Displays tick-by-tick portfolio value & gain/loss. Free 30-day trial. Give yourself the institutional advantage with free tools offered by this site. You can view daily upgrades and downgrades with no charge.
Because Briefing.com does not take any market positions and makes no money through financial market transactions, this news source maintains an objective and unbiased approach to its analyses.
- InvestorGuide Stock Analysis:
Read through opinion and analyses, and also gain free access to information that covers online brokers, stock information, and a comprehensive list of publicly traded companies (including home pages, research, and discussion).
- StockTA.com: Stock Technical analysis is a free technical analysis and stock screener. You’ll find free automated technical stock and mutual fund analysis, delayed charts, Fibonacci numbers, stock opinions, stock profiles, and screening page.
There’s no way to list all the blogs focused on investing, so the following list represents a smattering of sites that focus on this topic. If you want to cruise through dozens of investing blogs, you might want to visit the Stockblog.com directory.
- Bespoke’s Think B.I.G.: Users gain access to some of the most original content and intuitive thinking on the Street at this site for free.
- FlyboysFund: Jeff Lin has been confined to his house since January 2006 because of severe skin and other allergies. He resorted to stock trading and blogging to stay involved with the outside world. Although he lost previous 2007 entries to a server crash, he’s persevering with a new focus on industrial sectors, such as engineering, construction, oil service, machinery, mining and base metals, as well as technology.
- Knight Trader:
Browse through stock market news, breakouts, swing trades, stocks in play, mojo plays, position trades, options and day trades. Combine this site with The Visual Trader, another site by the same author. The second site emphasizes breakouts and technical analysis of chart patterns.
- My Adventures into The Street:
A first time investor and current graduate student learns how investing works so he can wipe out his college debt. Don’t be surprised when you encounter intelligence and logical thinking.
- Provident Capital Management: Although Michael Chapman offers his free perspectives on a weekly rather than daily basis, his Bull/Bear insights are uncanny.
- The Kirk Report: This blog isn’t totally free, as Charles E. Kirk (an individual investor who has been investing & trading stocks for over 12 years) would like a donation before you can access certain areas of the site. But, there’s not a cap or lower limit to that donation. The free information would keep anyone busy for days.
- Trader Mike: Michael Seneadza’s trading diary, where you can learn how one day trader thinks.
- TraderFeed: Brett Steenbarger, author of Trading (Wiley, 2003) and Enhancing Trader Performance (Wiley, 2006), helps readers with an interest in using historical patterns in markets to find a trading edge.
- Trading Goddess: Is this for real? You bet. The Trading Goddess provides humor as well as some interesting takes on stocks and Wall Street.
Wanna live on the safe side? Then check out these bond sites. Some are geared toward beginners, while others set the experienced investor up to trade bonds online.
- Bondsonline: If you need information, education and direction in making bond and fixed income investment decisions, then head to this site to learn about answers to all those questions.
- Investing in Bonds:
This site is geared toward many types of investors from beginners to experienced equity investors. They provide an interesting source of bond price information and include a wide variety of market data, news, commentary and information about bonds.
- Pimco: Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO) holds more than $720.6 billion in assets under management and more than 900 employees in offices in Newport Beach, New York, Singapore, Tokyo, London, Sydney, Munich, Toronto and Hong Kong. You’ll find super commentary and bond market analysis with links to further research materials.
- Trade Bonds: This site provide an online electronic trading system and e-infrastructure for participants in the fixed income market. Be aware that they provide no training on the bond market, so be prepared to know what you’re doing. However, they do maintain a research section and a portfolio tool that allows you to sort bonds by type, maturity, and coupon.
- Treasury Direct:
Find everything you’d want to know about savings bonds, T-Bills, notes and more. Set up and account and manage your bonds, bills, and notes.
If you want to bypass the middleman and avoid exorbitant fees, then these brokerages are for you. However, you should know a bit about how to trade (some sites will instruct you, some won’t) and you should check out these sites with other users (try online chatrooms, etc.) before you commit.
- AB Watley Direct: Great deal at $10 per trade, but if you don’t conduct more than three trades per month, they’ll charge you $25 maintenance fee. Straightforward, with few extras. But, you’ll have access to equities and equity options trading, including spot foreign exchange (Forex or FX), as well as currency options, futures, physical commodities, mutual funds and fixed
- BUYandHOLD: This online brokerage is for the long-term investor who focuses on dollar-cost averaging. After a $7 account fee (which includes two trades), trades are $3, with all trades executed within two one-hour time windows each day. Unlimited trading is $15 a month.
- Charles Schwab:
Equity trades average about $12.95 for the first 1,000 shares, but beware other hidden fees like the $3 handling charge. The site is easy to navigate, and provides full service from banking to retirement investing and more.
- E-Trade Financial: To qualify for the low $6.99 commissions for stock and options and a 75¢ fee per options contract, you must execute 500 or more stock or options trades per month. Like Schwab above, be aware that there are separate fees for many different transactions, and a minimum $50,000 asset in accounts held at E-Trade for any trades under $10.
- Fidelity Investments:
Fidelity’s standard commission is $19.95, but that fee can be reduced by the number of trades you commit to within a year. For instance, your commission will drop to $8.00 if you trade 120+ times per year and if you have $25,000 in household assets or if you have $1 million in household assets (no minimum trades). You can find equities, funds, and
more at this brokerage.
- Firstrade: This is, indeed, a discount online stock broker, with online market orders and limit orders at $6.95 per trade. However, for stocks at or under $2.00 and trades over 5,000 shares, add 1/2 cent per share for the entire order. No minimum initial deposit required.
- Merrill Lynch Direct:
Trade equities online for $29.95 per trade minimum. Merrill Lynch also sells over 3,000 mutual funds offered by more than 120 fund families.
- Muriel Siebert & Co., Inc.:
Access four automated stock selection systems from Validea, MarketEdge®, VectorVest® and Growth Stock Analytics. You also can gain access to unlimited free real-time quotes and delayed quotes before you login. For large or active accounts, they individually negotiate commissions and margin rates. They put an emphasis on "active trader" or "an investor with a large asset account."
- Scottrade: This is another discount online broker, with a flat $7.00 commission rate for all online market and limit equity orders, regardless of trade frequency, account balance or the number of shares in a transaction. Gain access to free streaming quotes, real-time account updates and wireless trading. The minimum to open an account is $500, but there are no maintenance fees.
- Sharebuilder: Like BUYandHOLD, this brokerage focuses on long-term investors and dollar-cost averaging accounts. Commissions are $4.00 per trade, $16.00 per market order. There are other plans for the more active dollar-cost averaging investor.
- T. Rowe Price:
Build your portfolio at T. Rowe Price from a selection of over 90 no-load mutual funds or roll over your 401K. If you’re a day trader, this isn’t the site for you, as you won’t find equity trades here.
- TD Ameritrade:
Accutrade TD Waterhouse, and many other former online brokerage members now trade here, where clients have access to some of the most innovative trading tools on the market. Internet equity trades average $9.99 per trade.
- Trading Direct: $9.95 flat rate for online equity orders. $19.95 for broker-assisted equity trades. No extra fees for large orders. They want a $500 initial deposit, but no maintenance fees. They also offer over 10,000 mutual funds.
- Vanguard Brokerage Services:
Learn about retirement investing, mutual funds, ETFs, IRAs, 401(k) plans, college savings plans, brokerage, advice services, and more. They offer stock, mutual fund, and options trading, but commissions are high and you might pay for reports that are free on other sites.
- Wall Street Access: When a brokerage states that, "The expertise to work your orders anonymously and discreetly to minimize market impact on your trade; we can find liquidity on large block trades," you know that the trades will be expensive. Although not quoted on the site (at least as far as we can see), rumor has it that commissions run at $25 per trade for active investors.
- WallStreet*E: Trade equities, options, and mutual funds. Flat ticket $14.95 per trade on limit, stop, and market orders. Frequent traders earn bonuses.
- Wang Investments: Wang Investments is an online deep discount brokerage firm – providing a wide range of investment tools to meet your financial objectives. You can dabble in stocks, CDs, IRAs, and more. Money market funds for unvested balances, sweeps to penny every day, access to low margin loans, no minimum to open account, but you’ll need $2,000 for margin account.
- Wells Fargo Investing:
Wells Fargo’s brokerage site offers a broad range of brokerage accounts to help you meet your investing needs. Commissions are $25 per trade, but you can gain access to commission-free trades if you link your brokerage account to your Wells Fargo PMA bank account.
We don’t know a single investor who doesn’t use charts or quotes. This list contains sites that focus specifically on those features, although some sites may contain news and commentary and more.
- BarChart: This site is more than a ‘charts and quotes’ site, as it supplies a free futures and equities website to introductory trading newsletters to custom web content solutions to complex real-time charting applications. This Chicago-based company’s main business is in commodities (it owns the Commodity Research Bureau), so its equities screens are super. You might want to spend some time exploring this site.
- Big Charts:
BigCharts contains comprehensive and easy-to-use investment tools such as interactive charts, quotes, industry analysis and intraday stock screeners, as well as market news and commentary.
- Clear Station: ClearStation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of E*TRADE Group, Inc., offers investment education and the essentials of technical analysis, fundamental analysis and community discussion to deliver a comprehensive "Three-Point Investment Approach."
Without registering, you have access to free real-time ECN quotes, delayed market quotes, news, charts, insight, and much more. However, you will need to enter in the stock symbols each time you wish to view that company’s information. When you register, you gain access to other tools such as watchlists, portfolio tracker, and you can view your FreeRealTime watchlist on your WAP-enabled device.
- InvestorTech: Much of the information contained on this site is free to use, but you must register to gain access to a free trial of their real time information.
Gain access to free applet charts that you can detach and "float" over your browser window. You can also draw trendlines and save the chart for future reference. You’ll get delayed quotes. Real time quotes carry a charge.
This link will take you straight to the stock charts page, one of the strongest features on this site. But, you also can tap into news, analyses, futures, forex and more at this site.
- StockCharts: The four free charts offered by StockCharts provide tools that help you to filter out insignificant price moves or to create candlestick, bar, or line charts for any stock, index or mutual fund in their database. You also can scan large collections of stocks quickly to spot various signals in one unique graphical display. This is all for free, but if you go premium you gain access to intraday data, portfolio charts and live data feeds.
The sites listed below carry more than news and stock prices. They often offer trading tools such as portfolios, watch lists, and more for the active investor. Some tools are for institutional traders, others for the average Joe and Jane.
Bloomberg’s success is due to the constant innovation of their products and the unique way in which they constantly adapt to an ever-changing marketplace. They take pride in accessing news, reporting it, analyzing it and distributing it faster and more accurately than any other organization. Their trading products are designed for the institutional trader.
- CNET Investor: Find updates, headlines, market summaries and more at this site. Utilize watch lists, portfolios, and have fun with the CEO Wealthmeter.
- Excite Money and Investing: Conduct your equity research with headlines, charts, and company information.
- InvestorGuide: Launched in 1996, InvestorGuide.com is WebFinance Inc.’s flagship business. The site’s mission is to empower individual investors to take control of their finances and investments through the Internet. They designed their site with the thoughts of the user first and foremost in mind, to help make the transition from full-service brokerage to online brokerages.
- Money.net: Money.net Inc. is an Internet financial technology company that was founded in 1998. This site offers enterprise level streaming and non-streaming solutions that include: real-time quotes, company and market news, advanced portfolio tracking, tick-by-tick charts and wireless alerting for retail investors and institutions. This company also offers other professional tools such as screeners, streaming quotes, and more.
- Morningstar: Morningstar provides a portal where you can create portfolios, read news and analysts’ reports, and more.
- Motley Fool: Although this site isn’t as edgy as it was a decade ago ("The Fool" was founded in 1994), the founders of this site and their followers have significantly changed how Americans – especially young Americans – view investing.
- MSN Money:
This link will take you to MSN’s investing section, where you can find much the same information that you’ll find in other portals (portfolios, news, etc.).
- Netscape Money and Business:
For the latest and most thorough business news and business resources, stock news and international business news to 401k information and finance calculators. Netscape has all this and more.
- SmartMoney: Dow Jones’s SmartMoney magazine’s site is filled with user-friendly investing tools. The site offers articles, news, charting tools and more to help you with your research. Unfortunately, many of the site’s features are fee-based.
- Yahoo! Finance: Take advantage of news, charts (especially the new Beta charts), and just about every other tool you can imagine at Yahoo! This is one of the most comprehensive financial sites around.
- Yodlee: Yodlee Money Center is an integrated suite of applications designed to make managing finances online a true breeze for mainstream consumers who want a personalized, safe and convenient way to be more in control of their finances. Unlike software-based PFM applications that require substantial data input, Yodlee MoneyCenter automatically collects and analyzes financial data from bank accounts, brokerages, 401(k) accounts, bills, mortgages, loans, and more.
Economic research provides the foundation for any sound investment planning, as investors use economic data to interpret current or future trends and to judge the overall health of an economy.
- AEI Research:
The American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research is a private, nonpartisan, not-for-profit institution dedicated to research and education on issues of government, politics, economics, and social welfare. You can find economic policy reports here that focus on various sectors.
- Bureau of Economic Analysis: The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) promotes a better understanding of the U.S. economy by providing the timeliest, most relevant, and accurate economic accounts data in an objective and cost-effective manner. You’ll find reports categorized by region and across the country, international reports, and accounts by industry.
- CIBC World Analysis: CIBC World Markets is the wholesale and corporate banking arm of CIBC, a leading North American financial institution. You’ll find a mix of North American and Canadian economic data at this site.
- Current Economic Data:
Martin Capital advisors maintain this site, where you’ll find economic and financial charts and data updated on a daily basis. This is an easy-to-use list with accompanying charts that are easy to comprehend. They also maintain a list of economic charts and data that you might find useful.
- EconData: This site maintains 1,000 links to socioeconomic data sources, arranged by subject and provider, pointers to the Web’s premiere data collections, and our own list of the ten best sites for finding regional economic data.
- Economic Indicators: The mission behind this governmental site is to provide timely access to the daily releases of key economic indicators from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (see above) and the U.S. Census Bureau.
- FedStats: FedStats provides access to the full range of official statistical information produced by the Federal Government without having to know in advance which Federal agency produces which particular statistic. The site uses search and link capabilities to more than 100 agencies that provide data and trend information on such topics as economic and population trends, crime, education, health care, aviation safety, energy use, farm production and more.
- Federal Reserve: Every trader keeps at least one eye on the Federal Reserve, especially during times when interest rates are considered. Their economic research and data, however, often demands more attention as it offers bulletins and reports that are updated daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annually.
- Financial Forecast Center:
All forecasts produced for this site are generated in-house using artificial intelligence. The forecast models, therefore, are 100% quantitative and use a global, long-range economic dataset with objective results. And because the Financial Forecast Center has no ties to other companies or institutions, their products and services are completely independent.
- Financial Trend Forecaster:
By watching the turning points in the Moore Inflation Predictor©, you can profit from inflation hedges (like gold, real estate and energy producers) when the rate is trending up and from bonds when the rate is trending down. If you can’t comprehend the chart, no worries – just read their current analysis!
- Free Lunch: Yes, there is still such a thing as a free lunch and this one includes free economic, demographic & financial data contained in databases with more than 165 million economic, financial, and demographic time series covering more than 180 countries and their sub-regions. This is a free service is provided by Moody’s Economy.com, an independent research provider that helps businesses, governments, and professional investors worldwide meet their planning and information needs. You might also check out Moody’s Dismal Scientist for more economic data.
Earnings and quarterly reports represent the bonus or the bane of any investor, depending upon the investor’s strategies and hopes. The following sites don’t own crystal balls, but they can give you clues as to whether or not your investments will see black or red, depending upon technical and/or fundamental indicators.
- Annual Reports: If you need an annual report now, this site will do the trick. This directory is a free service that enables investors to review a company’s annual report in PDF format.
Earnings.com is powered by Thomson StreetEvents, with latest corporate information including an event calendar, annual and quarterly reports, company profiles and more.
- Earnings Whispers: Pssst… gain access to the whispers calendar, alerts, notes, and discussion on upcoming earnings reports.
- Reuter’s Earnings Calendar: Upcoming earnings reports at a glance, with links to company’s pages that includes charts, prices, etc.
- WhisperNumber: Register to gain free access to earnings updates, whispers, and personal portfolios.
- Yahoo’s Earnings Calendar:
This earnings calendar provides links to the companies concerned at the Yahoo Financial pages, along with means to schedule and then listen to upcoming conference calls.
- Yahoo’s Earnings Surprises: Stick around Yahoo to learn more about recent earnings surprises with access to past conference calls and more.
- American Stock Exchange: As a
pioneer in the creation of exchange traded funds (ETFs), the American Stock Exchange launched a whole new class of securities that has grown to more than $300 billion in assets. Today, the Amex remains the center of development and the global market leader, with more than 200 listed ETFs.
- ETFConnect: This is your source for Closed-End Funds (CEFs) and Index Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) that feature intra-day trading and stock exchange listings.
Gauge sector performance over time, get a quick quote or screen for funds based on criteria such as expense ratio and P/E. This site is brought to viewers by Barclays Global Investors, the world’s largest ETF sponsor.
- Nasdaq.com: Follow Nasdaq’s ETFs, designed to follow the top equities in their market. Use a popular screen to whittle those ETFs and more down to a manageable number to watch or to pursue.
- Select Sector SPDRs:
Select Sector SPDRs are unique ETFs that divide the S&P 500 into nine sector index funds. You can customize your investments by picking and weighting these sectors to meet your specific investment goals.
- StreetTracks.com: State Street Global Advisors, which sponsors ETFs, runs this site where professionals can gain access to libraries, analytical tools, and managed accounts.
The major fund families have all moved to the Web in order to offer viewers their prospectuses and historical returns. Many of the following firms allow purchases and sales online as well. If you don’t find what you want here, head back up the list to ‘Brokerages,’ as many brokerages also offer access to funds.
- Alliance Capital:
AllianceBernstein L.P. is one of the largest publicly traded global asset management firms in the world with approximately $813 billion in assets under management. They provide diversified, global investment management services that include growth and value equities, blend strategies and fixed income services to institutional, high net worth and retail clients worldwide.
- American Century:
American Century offers investment options in fixed income, quantitative equity, value equity, growth equity, international equity and asset allocation.
- Dreyfus Investor:
Part of BNY Mellon Asset Management, the Dreyfus Corporation is one of the nation’s leading asset management and distribution companies, currently managing more than $200 billion in mutual funds and separately managed accounts. They provide investment management products and services that offer a broad range of equity, fixed-income, hedge and liquidity management products through individual asset management companies and multiple distribution channels.
- DWS Scudder:
DWS Scudder specializes in mutual funds, IRAs, offshore investments and more. DWS Scudder is part of Deutsche Asset Management, which represents the US asset management activities of Deutsche Bank AG, Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas, Deutsche Investment Management Americas Inc. and DWS Trust Company.
- Eaton Vance: Eaton Vance is a Top Fund Family of 2007 winner, with 20 funds of quality based upon the total number of Lipper-award winning funds for the three-, five- and ten-year periods as of the end of 2006.
- Franklin Templeton:
Franklin Templeton offers over 50 fixed income funds covering the entire fixed income spectrum, including government securities, municipal bonds, corporate bonds, floating-rate loans, global bonds and multi-sector strategies that capitalize on our expertise in each of these areas.
You’ll find 150 domestic and international equity, fixed-income and money market mutual funds, as well as a variety of separately managed accounts at Federated. This diversified product line is distributed through more than 5,400 financial intermediaries and institutions who assist investors in meeting their unique objectives.
- GAMCO Investors: GAMCO Investors, Inc. is a diversified asset manager and financial services company. The company’s investment services are primarily offered through its subsidiary GAMCO Asset Management Inc, which manages separate accounts for high net worth individuals, institutions, and qualified pension plans, and through the company’s role as advisor to a family of mutual funds.
- ING Funds: ING Funds partners with the some of the world’s top asset managers to manage many of their portfolios. In many cases, their partnerships represent the only way for retail investors to gain access to these well-known asset managers. All total, they offer more than 60 mutual funds that cover an array of market sectors and risk levels.
- Janus Capital Group:
This company’s asset-management disciplines include growth, core, international, value, risk-managed, alternative and fixed-income. These products are sold through advisors and financial intermediaries, to institutional investors and directly to retail investors.
- MFS Online:
Individuals can manage their MFS mutual funds or retirement accounts, track mutual fund performance, learn about workplace retirement and 529 college savings plans. Investment professionals can track fund performance, manage books of business, utilize sales ideas, and create compliance-approved hypotheticals. Institutional investors can find information on MFS Institutional Trusts, separately managed strategies, global perspective and economic commentary.
- Nuveen Investments:
"Conservatism, innovation and high-quality service—our resolute commitment to these three principles is the driving force behind our ability to provide our shareholders with sustained value, strong returns and consistent income." Nuveen provides services to individual or institutional investors and to investment professionals.
- Oppenheimer Funds:
This organization’s funds include global, growth, core, value, and "hybrid and specialty" options and more. Consumers can find a wide range of information here about all these funds and more.
- Pioneer Investments:
Pioneer Investments was one of the first U.S. investment firms to offer mutual funds. Today their products also include variable annuities and closed-end funds. Pioneer Investments is a global investment firm with offices in 22 countries and approximately $321.0 billion in assets under management as of September 30, 2007, of which approximately $82.2 billion was managed in the U.S.
- Putnam Investments: At Putnam, you can learn about mutual funds, college savings 529 plans, annuities, rollover IRAs, and non-U.S. funds. Putnam Investments is a global money management firm with 70 years of investment experience, nearly $191 billion in assets under management, 201 institutional clients, and nearly 9 million shareholders and retirement plan participants.
- T. Rowe Price:
Founded in 1937 by Thomas Rowe Price, Jr., the company offers separately managed investment portfolios for institutions and a broad range of mutual funds for individual investors and corporate retirement programs.
- Van Kampen: The market commentary on this site is outstanding. Listen to market opinion while browsing through Van Kampen’s list of funds, their retirement vehicles and more.
- Vanguard Group:
Access your accounts and timely investment information. Learn about retirement investing, mutual funds, ETFs, IRAs, 401(k) plans, college savings plans, brokerage, advice services, and more at this client-owned investment management company.
- Wells Fargo Advantage Funds:
Research 125 mutual funds in this line-up – funds that span all asset categories and investment styles. The site is geared toward individual or institutional investors and investment professionals.
Investing isn’t a game, but there’s no better way to learn how to use online investing tools. Don’t go into these games with the intention of winning. The best way to approach these sites is with the goal of learning more about the tools and your research abilities.
- Fantasy StockMarket:
Since 1998, Fantasy Stock Market® has provided a fun, interactive and competitive way to learn about investing and the stock markets to over 1/2 Million individuals and 10,000 Leagues. You can play individually or in a classroom ‘league,’ where groups ranging from 2 to 100+ can compete directly against each other with their own $100,000 Fantasy League account.
- Hollywood Stock Exchange: A rather strange game, but trading nonetheless. Join for free, earn two million "Hollywood Dollars," and then buy shares of your favorite actors and their new movies. Watch their values rise or fall based on their success. Prices soar with a blockbuster opening at the box office and plummet with a bomb no one went to see. You can trade in your H$ for merchandise.
- Marketocracy: Manage a virtual portfolio with $1M, with the chance to become a paid member of the "m100." Free membership with the chance to upgrade to a premium membership that includes enhanced portfolio tracking tools.
- Smart Stocks:
Smartstocks.com was founded in 1998 with the goal of providing a realistic stock market simulation game to teach people about the stock market without the risk of losing money. Smartstocks.com started with a few hundred users and has continued to grow to over 200,000 teachers, students, and individual investors around the world.
Fill out the online registration form for free and log in to your account starting with $100,000 in your fantasy portfolio. You can play this stock game as an individual or in a group.
- The Great Game: The Great Game™ is an on-line educational fantasy stock trading game where you can experience investing in shares on the UK stock market without any risk or costs or any fear of losing your shirt if you do get it wrong…
- Virtual Stock Exchange: Virtual Stock Exchange is a free online trading game from MarketWatch. Create public or private games with a cash balance you set, choose from thousands of games, and leverage powerful news and research resources from MarketWatch class.
There’s nothing like gold to fill a tooth… er, rather, to fill a portfolio! This is just one metal that the investor can use to diversify a portfolio, but it’s one of the most popular metals around. These sites will educate you about gold and they may entertain you for hours as well.
- Gold Sheet: If you want to know anything about gold, this is the site to use. You can retrieve
quotes, learn about gold history, find publications on gold and more…much, much more.
- Gold-Eagle: This is a super-busy site graphically; but if you look carefully, you can find charts on stock indices, exchange rates, bullion prices and intraday and historical prices for gold and other precious metals. Look further and you’ll discover some great free reports and studies.
- Goldseek.com: Gold, gold, and more gold. This site is great for neophyte gold investors, as they’ll find news, updated reports, and more all offered in easily digestible sections.
- Kitco: This is a very active site that contains forums, spot and futures gold prices, news and commentary, reports and more. The site looks a bit like a casino, so it sets the mood.
- Le Metropole Cafe: Le Metropole Cafe is a place where gold investors, commodities market experts, and top financial minds from all over the world meet, discuss, and publish their insights on the world of gold investing. You can join, but it’s going to cost you about $200 per year. Take advantage of the free trial first to see if this site is up your alley.
Learn all the mining gossip here, along with news about earnings, mine closings, new discoveries and management changes. Keep in mind that this site is based in Johannesberg, South Africa and supported by advertising from mining companies, so some information might be biased.
- National Mining Association: This link leads you to the page where the NMA explains the various types of gold investments.
No, hedging isn’t a crime. Nor is it a way to decorate your lawn. The following sites will educate, inform, and some will entertain the investor on the topic of hedging.
- Bear Market Central:
"Bearmarketcentral.com is your one-stop headquarters for obtaining all the information you need to not only survive the unfolding historic Great Bear Market of 2000-200[?], but to actually profit from it! We’ve surfed from Laguna Beach to Tokyo and back to bring you the best of the ‘Net. Don’t waste time struggling through those clumsy search engines. We’ve got what you need to succeed!"
- Fall St.: FallStreet.com was launched in January of 2000 with the mandate of providing an alternative opinion on the U.S. equity markets. They provide a clearinghouse for bearish and value-oriented investment information, independent research, and an investment newsletter containing specific company selections.
- Hedge Fund Center:
Unlike other hedge fund Web sites, the Center is not aligned or associated with any investment manager or consulting firm. As such, it can rigorously pursue its goal of providing objective, professional information and evaluation of relevant issues unfettered by commercial or political issues. The focus is on transparency.
HedgeFund.net, owned by Channel Capital Group Inc., is a leading source for hedge fund news and performance data on the Web. Investors who meet HedgeFund.net’s accreditation standards are eligible for access to the site’s database of information on more than 7,000 hedge funds, funds-of-funds and commodity products.
- HedgeWorld: This is an information portal for the global hedge fund community that offers its members access to content in print and electronic formats, including industry news, research and events. HedgeWorld’s community spans the globe, with more than 55,000 registered members in 125 countries.
- PrudentBear: David W. Tice & Associates, LLC. (DWTA) is the investment advisor to two mutual funds surrounded by a heavy dose of bearish commentary.
It’s always a bit of a rush to consider an Initial Public Offering (IPO), even when you don’t invest. If you do drop some cash on this type of investment, be sure to do your research at any one or all of these sites listed below. Remember that you can also find information about IPOs at many of the larger stock research sites such as MarketWatch, Yahoo!, and Hoovers.
- 123Jump: 123jump.com specializes in gathering, validating, and archiving financial information, as well as providing investment tools for the serious investor looking for high-quality information. New additions to the site include global markets update covering 20 countries, earnings news and call summaries, and fund manager interviews.
- Gaskins IPO Desk: Although this site is intended for retail clients and fund managers, you can find Francis Gaskins’ Pre-IPO scorecard, which rates IPOs in the pipeline before they price.
- IPO Home: Access basic information on this site for free. You’ll find consolidated calendars, news, commentary and more.
- IPO Monitor: You’ll find limited free content here, but for a small fee per month you can gain access to real-time e-mail alerts on pricing, IPO calendars, after-market info and a weekly wrap-up.
The sites listed below carry investment tools that you may or may not use. But, they’re listed here if you want to try them out to see if they fit your trading style.
- 24-Hour Trading:
If you want to know when any stock exchange opens and closes worldwide (based upon Eastern Time), use this page at Currency Trading. The links lead directly to each stock exchange listed.
- Foreign Stock Search Engine:
Looking for new foreign stocks? Start here to find international stocks listed on US exchanges. This site contains primarily ADRs and 200 international focused Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs).
- Google Finance: Use this as your homepage, as you can create a portfolio with related news, daily headlines, sector summary and more. You can keep tabs constantly on stocks where you want to hold a longer position.
- NASDAQ Pre-Market Activity: Most active NASDAQ stocks both before and after hours.
- Market Gauge: Analyze sectors to groups to the stocks within and then instantly compare these stocks to their peers.
- Pivot Point Calculator: This free online Pivot Point Calculator supports "floor, Woodies, Camarilla and Fibonacci pivots, and Tom DeMark levels" as you calculate open, high, low and close figures.
- Silicon Investor: Register for free to gain access to trading tools, news, message boards, charts, quotes, and alerts.
- StockConsultant: Type in a ticker symbol (about halfway down this page) and receive every bit of technical information you might want or need on that stock. Free for limited access to this information.
- Volume Advance and Decline:
What is says is what you get – at least for U.S. Exchanges & Indexes. This information provided free, with more tools available with membership.
- WallSt.net Free Tools: This link will take you directly to WallSt.Net’s tools, where you can determine latest buys and sells by volume (delayed). This site contains many other investing tools, including a place for "Rookies," where investors can practice buys and sells.
Whether you participate or merely lurk, message boards can often provide more information than the pros or the news media. Whether this information is accurate or not is determined by your willingness to follow up or participate. Good luck!
- Board Central: Enter company’s ticker, click the GO button, and then read messages about that stock from all leading boards.
- MarketWatch Discussions: Hope, despair, and hints posted daily.
- Raging Bull:
Raging Bull is a collection of financial message boards where users can track your favorite stocks or sectors. You can also create your own message board here.
- Silicon Investor:
Since August 11, 1995, 502,097 registered members have posted 24,011,521 public message on Silicon Investor. Each of these messages is available either by browsing the topic-specific subject message boards or by using the advanced search feature available only to Premium Subscribers.
- The Lion: TheLion.com boasts the world’s largest stock forum community site that offers real-time "All-In-One Search Engine" technology for powerful and comprehensive access to all stock symbol financial message and blogs, news, and content.
- Value Investors Club:
Great investment ideas are shared and discussed on a daily basis by a few select members. The benefits of this club are free, but admission is highly selective and the process may take a toll on newbie investors’ psyches.
- Wall St. Tape: Find forums hosted by Wall St. Tape and by members. Take advantage of the Day Trading Forum.
- Yahoo Investment Message Boards: Read and participate in boards created by investors.
The following sites carry financial news. Some focus on money news entirely and others provide comprehensive news from around the globe or specialized news coverage as well.
- CEO Express:
The free version of this site is dangerous, as it can divert you from the better part of your work day. Read business news and magazines, check on financial markets and more. Believe it or not, this site claims to pare this information down to the 20% that is most critical and useful.
- CNBC: All the market news that you can use and more. The online version consists of summaries of CNBC’s televised programming.
- Daytrader’s Bulletin:
Experienced day traders can use this bulletin’s approach as a comparison to their own technical analysis, to challenge their viewpoint or as support for their positions. New day traders can use their approach to learn day trading in S&P 500 futures index and their methods can be used in any market, any time frame.
- Dow Jones Newswires: Dow Jones Newswires (djnewswires.com) offers real-time news and information solutions for financial professionals providing investment, advice and institutional services, and focused services for corporate and communications executives. In addition to Dow Jones Newswires, Dow Jones & Company (NYSE: DJ; www.dowjones.com) publishes The Wall Street Journal and its international and online editions, Barron’s and the Far Eastern Economic Review, Dow Jones Indexes, MarketWatch, and the Ottaway group of community newspapers, and owns Factiva. Dow Jones is co-owner with Hearst of SmartMoney. Dow Jones also provides news content to CNBC and radio stations in the U.S.
- Drudge Report: Headlines that link to top news stories.
- Financial Times: Updated news on companies, markets, and market data and more, all from a financial perspective.
- Forbes: Imagine combining the Wall St Times, Scientific American, The Economist and Punch into one easy to read package – this is what you get with Forbes.
- Investor’s Business Daily: More than financial news, this site provides analysis, a "screen of the day," and more for free.
- Journalist Express:
JournalistExpress is the journalist’s interface to the Internet, but investors also can take advantage of this database filled with international, national, regional, and local online news. You can find stock quotes, headline news and the ability to customize JournalistExpress to your liking.
- The Street: Free news gathered from various financial sites, including some commentary and more. Free membership is provided as well.
- The Wall Street Journal: If you can’t have the Wall St. Journal delivered to your home, no worries…get all the headlines and more online for free at WSJ’s online portal filled with news, blogs, investment advice and world business.
- Tiger Financial News Network: From Tom O’Brien’s "Opening Growl" to Ed Young’s "Futures Hour," you’ll learn much from this site’s commentary and podcasts.
- Wall Street Reporter:
Wall Street Reporter produces in-depth, unbiased, unfiltered, interviews that deliver a first-hand, straight -from-the-source perspective. Each year they conduct over 5,000 interviews, which you can hear for yourself for free when you become a member.
- Chicago Board of Trade: The
Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), established in 1848, is a leading futures and options on futures exchange. More than 3,600 CBOT members trade 50 different futures and options products at the exchange through open auction and/or electronically. The historic merger between the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Chicago Board of Trade provides customers with the widest array of benchmark products spanning all major asset classes.
- Chicago Board Options Exchange: The CBOE offers options on individual securities, customizable Flex options that let you request your own strike prices and expiration dates, and long-term Leaps on stocks and indexes. Learn from tutorials, online courses, seminars, and more.
- Ino.com: INO specialize in the futures and options markets, serving traders worldwide with a continuous information service of quotes, charts and news. As a privately held and independent resource, they are also a storefront for trading tools, charts, publications, educational courses and other resources.
- Optionetics: Since 1993, Optionetics has provided investment education services, portfolio management techniques, market analysis and online trading tools to over 250,000 people from more than 50 countries. Avoiding overly theoretical or technically complicated material, Optionetics represents a practical, balanced approach to trading profitably in today’s markets.
- OptionInvestor: For a thirty-day free trial and then $49.94 per month, you can receive access to the Option Investor newsletter and the Market Monitor, along with a site full of daily and intraday market commentaries, news updates and links to basic and advanced trading services.
- Options Industry Council:
The Options Industry Council (OIC) was created to educate investors and their financial advisors about the benefits and risks of exchange-traded equity options. Its sponsors include the American Stock Exchange, the Boston Options Exchange, the Chicago Board Options Exchange, the International Securities Exchange, NYSE Arca, the Philadelphia Stock Exchange and The Options Clearing Corporation.
- OptionsXpress: OptionsXpress is a pioneer in online options trading, headed by a unique management team with over 30 years combined experience in the options marketplace.
- PowerOptionsPlus: For a price, you can find, compare, and analyze all 250,000+ options on the market. The site also maintains a great assortment of screening tools.
The following links will lead you to pre-defined scans and signals that can help you select stocks through various parameters chosen by that specific site.
- AAII’s Stock Screens:
American Association of Individual Investors updates their stock screens monthly, covering over 50 stock investment strategies as well as the companies that pass each investment screen. You must register for free to read final data.
- AlphaKing: Free stock trading signals and fundamental ratings that are tabulated by using the opening price the day following a new trading signal, and that exclude commissions, dividends, or interest paid on cash balances during sell periods.
- Daily Movers:
This is one trader’s systematic approach to trading, and his “edge” is his ability to identify relative strength and weakness within the options market. You can join to get inside information, or gain access to company information for free through the scanner and various reports.
- Jeremy’s Seasonality Report: This site holds monthly seasonality reports on popular American equities created by an undergraduate computer science major.
- MSN Screens: Predefined lists labeled by highs and lows, price, expectations, etc.
- StockCharts’ Predefined Scans: An at-a-glance page filled with technical, candlestick, and P&F Patterns.
- Reuter’s Screening Center: Use these screening tools to find the best opportunities in stocks valued by growth, value, sentiment, and/or quality.
Green investing is becoming a staple for many investors. The companies listed below usually combine various green companies to form funds. Use their ideas to create your own green portfolio or invest in their properties for SRI.
- Calvert Online: For 30 years, Calvert has offered a broad range of investment options, including the nation’s largest array of socially responsible mutual funds as well as expertly managed bond funds. Calvert offers a full family of 40 equity, fixed income, and money market mutual funds as well as separate account products for institutional investors.
- Citizens Funds:
Citizens has focused on investing in companies that are fundamentally strong and socially responsible to meet the financial goals of their shareholders. They offer eight no-load mutual funds, each with a unique strategy seeking to maximize its individual goal. Additionally, they offer a wide variety of investment choices as well as retirement products.
- Domini Social Investments:
Domini manages $1.8 billion for individual and institutional investors who wish to integrate social and environmental standards into their investment decisions. The Domini Funds are not affiliated with any bank and are not insured by the FDIC.
- Good Money: Good Money is an information provider only – they don’t offer funds or other investments. They provide directories, news, company profiles, and more.
- SocialFunds.com: This is, perhaps, one of the most informative SIF sites on the Web. You can review more than fifty funds based upon their participation in community of animal testing or run free searches into over 1,000 companies and their records.
- Social Investment Forum:
The Social Investment Forum (SIF) is the only national membership association dedicated to advancing the concept, practice, and growth of socially and environmentally responsible investing. Over 500 members integrate economic, environmental, social and governance factors into their investment decisions and SIF provides programs and resources to advance this work.
- Trust for Public Land: The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national, nonprofit, land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, community gardens, historic sites, rural lands, and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. This is a different type of investment site that provides funding profiles, information on employer-matching contributions, and tax exempt donation tips.
The following sites provide either "one-stop" research portals or they focus on a single area of research to the point of obsession:
- Best Calls:
This site aggregates live broadcasts and recordings of earnings announcements, shareholder meetings and management interviews for thousands of companies. You can listen by phone or by RealPlayer and sign up for alerts on upcoming calls. Not all services are free.
- Briefing.com: You’ll receive great commentary, news, and analyses at this site for free. You’ll gain access to live market information or tools for active trading for a price.
- Bull Sector: Would you prefer to focus on a specific sector? This site offers every possible sector and groups within those sectors so you can diversify your portfolio easily.
- Edgar Online: "The Trusted Source for Company Information" delivers a broad spectrum of data including SEC filings, fundamental data, institutional holdings, insider trades, IPO/SPO registrations, and access to global annual reports and conference call transcripts for your research pleasure.
- Hoover’s Online: Get insight into a company with brief profiles. You can gain access to more information for a fee.
- Investars: Find the best analyst by ticker, sector, or performance. You can sign up for email alerts when your chosen analysts change recommendations. Subscriptions for a price.
- MarketWatch: Conduct research into IPOs, funds, ETFs and more with portfolios, alerts, and interactive charting.
- Moody’s: While not as intuitive as Yahoo! Finance or MSN Money, you’ll receive much more information at this site. Register for free to gain access to ratings on over 170,000 corporate, government, and structured finance securities, rating news, an events calendar and more.
- Reuters Investor:
While registration at this top research site is free, much of the information will cost you. You can obtain free annual reports here.
- Site-By-Site: Use this international investment portal and research center to learn more about local and international stocks.
- Starmine: Before you waste time rating analysts on your own, spend a little time with Starmine. This site rates analysts based upon accuracy in earnings predictions for the companies that analysts cover. You can search by ticker, analyst name, or by industry if you pay up. However, you can sign up for the free newsletter to receive earnings surprise predictions and earnings quality alerts.
- Value Line: Value Line publishes more than a dozen print and electronic products which they believe are utilized by more than half-a-million investors for timely information on stocks, mutual funds, special situations, options and convertibles. You’ll discover comprehensive source of information and advice on approximately 1,700 stocks, more than 90 industries, the stock market, and the economy.
- Zack’s Investment Research:
Based upon the theory that earnings estimate revisions are the most powerful force impacting stock prices, this firm offers their perspectives, recommendations and advice for free. Register to build a free watch portfolio and to receive news updates. Other tools are available with a paid membership.
Unlike pre-screened lists, you can enter various criteria or parameters into the tools provided below to gain access to the database results.
- Guru Screener:
Guru Analysis is a group of nine stock evaluation methodologies based upon the published analysis techniques of well know investment advisers and other popular sources. Investors may screen a stock for the highest number of scores over a chosen percentage amount. Another common approach is to screen a stock for the highest percentage score from the guru that most closely matches the investor’s individual philosophy or risk tolerance. Either way, the Guru Analysis feature provides a very popular screening technique. Provided by NASDAQ.
Take the emotion out of your trades with advanced screeners, trading signals, and rule-based strategies for buying and selling stocks. This is a fee-based service with a 30-day free trial.
- Trading Markets Scanner:
The TradingMarkets.com Stock Scanner allows you to scan the TradingMarkets.com stock database using your own criteria. The database consists of approximately 4,500 NYSE, Nasdaq and AMEX stocks over $10.00 per share. The data is closing data as of the end of each trading day and is updated by 7:00 p.m. EST.
- TradeStars: Indicators delayed by one day. You can use the free portion of this site to validate your own signals.
ValuEngine.com (VE) is a stock valuation and forecasting service founded by Ivy League finance academics. ValuEngine’s Stock Valuation, Stock Forecast, Portfolio Forecast, and Portfolio Builder models utilize state-of-the-art valuation, forecasting, and advisory technologies. While some reports are reserved for members, you can access some valuable information for free at this site.
While some sites offer learning materials along with their other products, these sites focus solely on investor training.
- Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.:
Warren Buffet has put his investment vehicle Berkshire Hathaway online, so you can gain insight into the most successful investor’s mind. The joke is that Buffet and Bill Gates are so rich because they share the same comb.
StockCharts provides instructive articles about everything you’d want to know about charts, but about their charts specifically. Regardless of that narrow focus, you can learn much from this site’s information.
- Investopedia: From bonds to venture capital, you can find detailed and comprehensive information about any type of investment at this site.
- TradingDay.com: Read articles about day trading fundamentals such as "Cutting Losses" and "Pullback Day Trading."
- Stockalicious: Track, evaluate, and improve your portfolio performance with the tools provided by this site.
- Trade Juice: You’ll find day trading articles, books, tools, and more for the novice or expert day trader.
- The Pattern Site:
What happens to a stock after a bad earnings report? What does a chart pattern look like on a heavy breakout day? Learn about all these patterns and more at this site.
- Wealth-Lab Trading Laboratory:
Sometimes doing is better than reading. Develop and back test your own stock market trading systems, and explore the systems contributed by other members at this site.
It’s never too late to begin investing, and it’s never, ever too early to begin socking that cash away to earn interest. The following sites try to appeal to certain age groups, from under ten to teenagers.
- Planet Orange: You’re
probably familiar with ING’s orange ball… well, for kids, it’s an orange planet. This site uses gaming psychology and geology to teach kids how to earn money and how to spend, save, and invest it as well.
- The Stock Market Game: The Stock Market Game™ (SMG) gives students the chance to invest a hypothetical $100,000 in an on-line portfolio. They think they’re playing a game. "You know they’re learning economic and financial concepts they’ll use for the rest of their lives." This truly is the best stock market game around, hands down.
- Young Investor: This site is divided into sections for kids, teens, and parents, and offers advice and games in four categories where readers learn how to earn money, invest it, plan for the future, and "Play It." The teen section is great for teens and for adult beginners to the stock market.
- Young Investors Network:
Beware the sound effects and the insidious little music window that pops up behind the main screen. Otherwise, the kids might have fun with this site and learn tons about the stock market here. Citigroup’s Smith Barney offers this site, which contains separate sections for educators, families, and kids.
- Young Money: This is the Web site for Young Money Magazine, aimed primarily at college students, late teens and young adults. While the site is ‘cool’ in look and focus (and the calculators are great), the articles have put some teens I know to sleep. The site provides a great resource for topics that parents should talk about with their kids – but well before they head off to college.
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