Messages: What Members Are Asking On-Line
by CI Staff
Overlooked Features on Yahoo!
I use Yahoo! Finance on a daily basis. After reading your article On-Line Portfolio Managers [July/August 2004 of Computerized Investing; available in the archives at AAII.com], I realized there are a few important Yahoo! features you may wish to consider in your next article. First, in the product comparison grid, note that Yahoo! does handle options. When entering an option you must include the five-character symbol followed by a period and an X. For example, VONAH.X is the January 2007 $40 call option on AMZN.
Also in the grid, note that the export feature creates a CSV file. Of course, that is an ASCII file type. The export file is in strict CSV format with quote marks surrounding text fields and commas separating all fields.
Second, it is possible to import into a Yahoo! portfolio. If you have a list of symbols in a column in a spreadsheet or in a continuous string separated by spaces or commas in a text document, you can use Windows copy to clipboard feature to capture the list and then use paste from clipboard to paste the symbols into an edited portfolio. You can only import ticker symbols. But, still, this is very useful.
Third, there is a list of recent news headlines for each stock in a displayed portfolio. The list appears at the bottom of every portfolio you display. This feature is extremely useful. If you have a watchlist or portfolio of 20 to 30 stocks, you do not need to key them in one at a time to see each stocks recent news. Just put them all in a Yahoo! portfolio and display the portfolio whenever you want to check the news. This is the most valuable feature of Yahoo! for me.
One other nice feature of all on-line portfolio managers is their ability to be viewed on almost any computer that is attached to the Internet. This feature is especially useful to people who are traveling.
On-Line Fund Descriptions
Since joining AAII, I have read a lot of articles about mutual fund portfolio analysis but have failed to find a tool or a Web site where I can enter my current mutual fund portfolio and have it analyzed for:
CI editors respond:
Your best bet for this type of analysis on mutual funds would be the Web site Morningstar.com. The site is highlighted in our comparison of comprehensive investment Web sites in this issue (starting on page 9). Premium ($12.95/month) subscribers to Morningstar.com gain access to advanced portfolio analysis that shows allocation of the portfolio across many metrics including asset class, investment style, and industry concentration. A stock intersection tool examines your direct stock holdings and the holdings of any mutual funds that you own to reveal your investment in specific stocks and any duplication of holdings between your funds.