New Computer Investing Products
by CI Staff
Toolkit offers a suite of stock analysis tools and reports. The latest version adds increased customization and charting abilities and cleaner navigation. The program allows you to download, import and update 10 years of historical data for any company using Morningstar data from StockCentral.com (a separate subscription is required, and a free trial is available). You can also use the SSG files shipped on the monthly update disks of AAII’s Stock Investor Pro screening program.
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By entering a ticker symbol, you can access a wealth of data. A quarterly sales and earnings chart displays financial results over the last 10 years and projects growth rates.
The program’s quality analysis looks at trends in return on assets, pretax profits and debt to equity. Analysis of price, price-earnings ratio, and dividends includes yearly highs and lows as well as payout ratios and yield.
Toolkit then offers an evaluation of reward and risk over the next five years, which estimates high and low stock prices based on a number of scenarios.
The Stock Management Guide compiles yearly data such as price-earnings ratios and price zones (what Toolkit recommends as good price points at which to consider buying and selling), as well as quarterly earnings, share prices and price-earnings ratios. A chart of prices and the price-earnings ratio compares the movement of each data point over five years. Quarterly trend and annual price-earnings analysis charts show related data points over a 10-year period and also calculate five-year averages.
You can create a portfolio and update price data automatically, print performance reports and set up alerts. Graphs can be customized, saved and printed.
$179.99; free 30-day trial available at the Web site
Windows XP or 32-bit Vista; 256 MB RAM; 20 MB free hard disk space; Internet access
1430 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
QuoteTracker offers a portfolio tracking software program that pulls price and volume data from various Internet sources. The program allows you to create portfolios with stocks, mutual funds and ETFs. You can also set up price alerts for any security in your portfolio.
Once you have installed the program, you will be asked to choose a data source. There are free sources for delayed data as well as links to a number of brokerage firms that offer customers free access to real-time price data. For example, Scottrade and TD Ameritrade customers can enter account information and QuoteTracker will pull real-time data from the brokerage sites.
Creating a portfolio is simple, but there is no way to pull portfolio data directly from a brokerage firm. Each security must first be entered by hand. The program does not track dividends and gains or losses on the sale of stocks. It simply tracks the current value of your portfolio.
QuoteTracker has over 120 technical indicators and the ability to customize charts. An alert system allows you to set up price alerts, which are received via E-mail or heard as an audio alert when the program’s portfolio tracking page is open. QuoteTracker also allows for customization of views and printed reports.
TD Ameritrade clients who meet certain account minimums can download the program for free. A free version is also available for download at the QuoteTracker Web site, but this version contains advertisements and is limited in its capabilities. The fully functional and advertisement-free version is $60 per year.
$60/year; free for TD Ameritrade account holders; free limited-feature version available
Windows XP or Vista; 500 MB RAM; Internet access
New Tracking Tools on Reuters.com
Reuters has recently reintroduced its portfolio and watchlist tools. The tools are free and simple to use. You can track the value of current holdings, view historical performance, analyze allocations and get news on portfolio holdings. You can add up to 50 securities to each portfolio and track an unlimited number of securities in a watchlist. Additional features are planned for the near future including the abilities to share your portfolio, follow the portfolios of other members and experts, rank comparative performance, and participate in discussions. Also, Reuters now offers additional earnings and sales data for stocks. You can see sales and earnings consensus estimates for the upcoming two quarters and two fiscal years along with the number of estimates, and the mean, high, low and year-ago estimates. Historical surprise data includes sales and earnings surprises for the last five quarters. You can also see how many analysts made sales and earnings revisions either up or down for the upcoming two quarters and fiscal years.
Zignals Adds Features
Real-time data for watchlist stocks and 20-minute delayed data for charts are now available at Zignals. You can choose from candlestick or line charting and display the current volume as well. Additionally, you can create and store stock price movement projections (the charting service keeps record of where you believe a stock will go and where you need to consider getting out) and share your results with other users. You can also compare the performance of a number of stocks simultaneously. Zignals is a free Web site.
eSignal Absorbs QuoteTrader
eSignal has retired QuoteTrader as a stand-alone application. The functionality of QuoteTrader has been incorporated into the eSignal product line, including the newest version, eSignal OnDemand, which costs $24.95 a month. The new program combines QuoteTrader’s trade execution and account management with eSignal’s charting and technical analysis tools. A free 30-day trial of eSignal OnDemand is available.
SmartStops’ New BrokerLink Tool
SmartStops is a Web site that helps traders identify price triggers to attempt to protect against large losses. Its newest tool, BrokerLink, allows users with accounts at TD Ameritrade to coordinate SmartStops portfolios with their brokerage accounts. For each brokerage account, users can create an associated portfolio and then can create order requests for certain stocks, choosing the number of shares and an order trigger (based on price). At the close of the market each day, an E-mail is sent to the account holder with a list of protective order requests that includes updated SmartStops data. Users can then approve or modify each order request and automatically send them to a broker. BrokerLink costs $14.95 per month in addition to a monthly fee for SmartStops, which ranges from free to $39.95 based on the number of stocks tracked.
Bollinger Bands for Forex
John Bollinger has a Web site that offers Bollinger Band analysis for forex stocks. A new feature merges technical analysis with forex news. You can monitor charts and news and learn general information about Bollinger Bands and forex trading. The site is free.