Recently, I wrote about the best sites to improve your overall financial situation. But once you have your cash-flow on an even keel, you learn all the tricks of the trade, and your investment accounts start to look nice and healthy, it is essential to keep them that way. Therefore, one method of staying ahead of financial trends – including crypto-currencies – is to read financial news.
Gone are the days when reading financial news was akin to having your toenails pulled out without an anaesthetic. These days, financial news websites are bright, well-laid out, with content that is interesting and easy to read. Even the previously dry and staid Wall Street Journal, and Financial Times have had a makeover to appeal to the younger crowd. Let’s take a look.
I don’t care for CNN in general – they tend to totally go over the top when it comes to disasters, shootings, and what have you. But their money page is actually quite the exception. It is easy to read, and I have quite often found myself coming back time and again to check on the headlines.
CNN Money also sometimes covers interesting amusing stories such as No, pot farmers don’t get high all day long. And did you know that you can get an insurance discount of up to 15% if you wear a fitness tracker? These are the advantages of keeping up with finance news. I am definitely keeping my Fitbit on now.
The thing that will strike you about Bloomberg Business, when you visit it for the first time, is how much blue it has. In fact, you will be attacked on all fronts by the color blue. But it is remarkably well designed with eye-catching headlines and images, as well as the obligatory stock exchange prices at the top. Plus it asks that all-important question : Why Is U.S. Whiskey So Popular Right Now? As a Scot, I definitely had to click that link to find out.
When I visited CNBC’s financial news page, I was struck by a growing trend. Finance pages have a lot of color splashes everywhere. Whether it’s the spiky graphs, the stock quotes, or the overall site design, these sites are far from boring to look at. Even if you have no idea how to separate a DAX from a FTSE while it’s buddies with a CAC, you still feel extremely intelligent reading the page. (“yeah dad, just reading that the DAX and the FTSE are both up. What, the CAC? Yeah that too, over 5,000 points!”).
The venerable British institution, which is the Financial Times, has not escaped the digital revolution. Gone are the days when the only people caught reading the FT were men in suits and bowler hats, going to work at the bank. It’s now online, but unlike many other media sites, the Financial Times has chosen to hide behind a paywall. You can either register and have 3 articles a week free of charge. Or you can choose a paid subscription plan, which works out at roughly $8 a week if you pay annually, and only want the online version.
If you can get your company to pay this for you as a business expense, it is a great publication to stay on top of financial news. And it has editions for the UK, US, and various other international locations.
I would be remiss if I didn’t at least make a passing mention towards Google Finance. In the aesthetics department, Google Finance is nothing to write home about. There is an abundance of white everywhere. I don’t usually complain when it comes to minimalist zen designs of websites, but Google takes it to a whole new level. Apart from a tiny squiggly graph, how about some graphics, Google? Something to brighten the page up?
Apart from news aggregated from all over the web, you are also given a portfolio tracker, and the information you enter will be stored in your Google account. You can also screen stocks and view domestic trends.
Finally, before we get our US readers penning emails of complaint about me being biased by including the Financial Times, I would like to even things out by including the US version of the FT – the Wall Street Journal. Like the FT, the Wall Street Journal is also behind a paywall, but unlike the FT, the Wall Street Journal does not offer a free option. Yep, not even one lousy article a month. Boo.
Payment starts at $12 for 12 weeks, if you only want the digital edition. However, it has been known that some WSJ articles are fully viewable if you access them via Google News. However, that is very hit-and-miss, and the WSJ normally are quite fast at plugging the hole when they find out. But sometimes you get lucky, sometimes not. You can just do what I do – look at the headlines. It doesn’t cost anything to read the headlines.
So fellow financial nerds, what do you read to keep on top of your stock portfolio? Drop the names of your preferred publications in the comments below. Or leave your username and password for the FT and WSJ (that was a joke. But you could if you wanted to…..)
Image Credits: newspaper , business Via Shutterstock