Estimize Webinar With Josh Brown And Sean Udall: When Traditional Information Sources No Longer Cut It by Estimize

Last week, Estimize hosted a special webinar entitled “When Traditional Information Sources No Longer Cut It,” featuring Josh Brown and Sean Udall. If you happened to miss it, fret not, you can listen to the replay here!

During the 1 hour event, Josh and Sean gave listeners insight into the new data sources they’re incorporating into their investment strategies, and how they’ve gone about doing so.

The webinar began with a quick poll for listeners: “What is your favorite new source of data you use to make investment decisions?” Answer options were: Blogs, social media platforms, crowdsourcing platforms, specialized industry data sources, idea dinners or conferences. Specialized industry data sources took the cake with 29% of answers, followed closely by blogs with 28%.

Josh Brown Traditional Information Sources

Josh Brown & Sean Udall – Favorite new source of data

Josh Brown started his well-known blog, The Reformed Broker, in 2008. He wasn’t looking to make a business out of it at the time, but thought it was a great opportunity to share what he was thinking about the markets with a large group of interested investors. “Otherwise you’re just another guy working in finance, you have 10 -12 people to talk to everyday, and you’re limited in hearing their opinions and sharing yours with them.” The blog is a way to go broader, and Josh makes several other industry blogs part of his daily reading.

Sean on the other hand, revealed his affinity for specialized industry data sources such as satellite data.

But in addition to these, what other new sources of data does our panel use in their daily workflow?

Josh Brown makes sure he has a general awareness of what’s happening on different platforms. In order to track sentiment, for instance, he checks in on Estimize and Stocktwits, while Stockcharts.com is his favorite charting tool.

Sean also likes the social space, using Twitter and Stocktwits, as well as earnings whisper data which he’s been following for over a decade now. “The bottom line in a stock report, in relation to whisper data, moves stock prices at the time, and has for a while.”

Moderator, and CEO of Estimize, Leigh Drogen, thinks newer fintech companies such as TickerTags, Eido Search, Slingshot Insights, Orbital Insights and Premise provide the most compelling new data sets.

But once you’ve found interesting new sources of insight, how does one incorporate them into their investment strategy? The webinar also aimed to answer this question, as many individual investors can be apprehensive about how to layer in new data points.

Josh Brown recommends always thinking about how your investment strategy can be better, and what can be improved upon. Clearly an individual trader is not going to build software and compete against computer engineers at hedge funds … but it’s important to be more evidence based and incorporate insights from nontraditional sources, and not always rely on traditional indicators. Man-made economic indicators and technical indicators, many of which were created 50+ years ago, come in and out of importance and are not all you should be looking at. Investors can no longer have a closed mind to new data sources, and should not necessarily believe that these older sources are more legitimate.

Sean advised listeners to gradually integrate new data. Don’t layer in 3 or 4 at once, but start out small. The issue he sees most frequently is that investors are already frustrated with their portfolio’s performance, and as a result brashly add too many new data points, and get even more confused and frustrated.

To close, Leigh asked our guests if their strategies and behaviors change in more volatile markets, like we are seeing now.

Josh Brown thinks there is too much of a premium placed on “actionable” research, and not enough on contextual research. Contextual research has a higher value, the idea of building a framework and figuring out where everything fits, and what if anything from this data source will change my view?

Taking it one step further, Sean agrees that contextual data is far more important than actionable information. “If I can’t take other side of the trade, there is no trade there.” Most importantly, Sean suggests having a time frame and sticking to it, not succumbing to volatility.

To get more insight, listen to the entirety of the webinar here!