Benzinga Pro Review
Speed of News
In this article, we take a critical look at Benzinga Pro, a news feed service for professional traders. In addition to looking at it’s unique features, we compare it’s typical features to other news feed services.
Benzinga Pro is a live market news feed run by financial news outlet Benzinga. The service provides second to second news, rumors, document releases, and other important market news usually not reported on by free news outlets in an actionable time frame. They also offer a squawk box service announcing news in real time, before reporters even have time to write up reports, giving you the fastest access to news.
Benzinga Pro has three pricing tiers. Their basic plan offers a basic live news feed, and their essential offers all of their advertised features. They have an additional enterprise-facing plan which one must contact Benzinga to purchase.
Here are the monthly prices:
Here are the annual prices:
At a first glance, Benzinga Pro’s news feed looks like your standard news feed included in most brokerage platforms. However, upon closer analysis, you see that much more value is stored within. Chiefly being its speed, Benzinga has the advantage of having their own news staff and not having to rely on other reporters from sites such as MarketWatch and Seeking Alpha.
This news feed has all of the ingredients a day trader could desire. It reports on all types of catalysts like press releases, analyst upgrades/downgrades, rumors, block trades, stock splits, SEC filings, unusual options market activity, and many more. A day trader filtering the news feed to only show their preferred catalysts will have dozens of trading opportunities present themselves at any hour of the day.
One can additionally filter by other criteria like sector, which is a useful filter for when a specific industry presents massive opportunity. Traders of the shipping companies of 2016, and blockchain companies of 2018 will be able to identify with this.
Benzinga Pro’s screener is quite barebones, but given that Pro is a news service, it’s surprising that there is a screener at all. While there is limited functionality, the screener is practical for platform; its filters are criteria used to find big losers and gainers due to news stories.
The two important filters are the session and time period. Session allows you to find gainers & losers from either pre-market, market hours, or after hours. When a big move happens during pre-market or after hours, there is usually a catalyst causing the move, which you can click through and read about in the platform.
The Period filter allows you to search for large market moves inside a given time period. If a large move is made inside of 15 minutes, it’s unlikely to be due to trend or momentum, instead, it’s likely a catalyst which you can click through and read about.
The squawk box is, in my opinion, the most useful and game-changing feature included in any news feed, and especially Benzinga Pro, as they are lightning fast with their audio alerts. Benzinga’s audio alerts are announced with the short-term trader in mind. They announce everything from the basics like earnings reports and acquisition announcements, to large options markets moves and reports from prominent short sellers.
Any trader who has tried to keep their eye on a text news feed while looking at multiple charts, time & sales, and level 2, knows that it is a futile task. A squawk box allows one to have a guy read the news into your ears clearly and extremely fast.
This is an immensely useful feature that isn’t as prominently featured in the marketing of this service as I think it should be. The news desk allows you to chat with members of the Benzinga news team and ask them any question about a stock. If a stock is up 40% today and you cannot figure out why, you can ask the news desk, if they don’t have the answer immediately on hand, they will do research, and contact the company and/or industry sources if necessary to get you an answer. It’s impressive to have an army of analysts at your helm given the price of the platform.
While it’s nothing groundbreaking, Benzinga Pro’s corporate calendar is quite useful for finding specific announcements and events. My favorite part of the calendar is its ability to see the dates of future events like stock splits or retail sales number. While most calendars simply have a list of events for today, Benzinga’s allows you to look at ranges of dates in the past, present, and future.
Here are the events covered in the calendar:
- Analyst Ratings
- Conference Calls
- Retail Sales
- SEC Filings
- Secondary Offerings
- Stock Splits
Benzinga’s own charts are pretty unremarkable, but they are linked to all news feeds and calendars, allowing you to double click any stock symbol and it populates your chart window with that symbol.
While experienced traders may find Benzinga’s charts to be lacking, you can access embedded TradingView charts by switching to the “charts” tab, rather than the overview tab.
The statistic provided to you about a company you’re looking at is pretty basic, it’s all stuff you can get off Yahoo Finance or a similar website but one interesting metric is that next to each metric like Market Cap or P/E ratio, Benzinga shows you the company’s industry average, giving you an idea of how the company stacks up against its competitors.
The market news feed space has a good deal of competition, with many traders questioning why they need a seperate platform just for news, as many premier financial platforms include comprehensive news feeds within them.
While Benzinga Pro as a platform has little in the way of proprietary features to offer the marketplace, they do have a significant competitive advantage in that Benzinga is a financial news firm with a recognizable brand, so they produce proprietary content and their news team have unique insights due to their experience.
Benzinga Pro’s main competitors are TradeTheNews and RanSquawk, which both provide live news feeds and squawk boxes. All are somewhat similarly priced with very similar features, and one’s choice is likely to come down to interface, and the team behind the news feeds and squawk boxes. The speed of publishing from each platform is difficult to quantify.
It is worth mentioning that Benzinga Pro’s interface is more modern and likely slightly more of a resource-hog than TradeTheNews’ interface, which is more “vintage” looking. Those with out-of-date CPUs should stress test each news platform with their multiple monitors and all trading software packages open.
- Innovative fintech company
- News Desk gives you personal access to a team of analysts
- Benzinga has the ability to get exclusive stories to their established brand in financial news
- Very competitive pricing
- Covers equities only
- Competitors offer 24 hour squawk coverage