Seeking Alpha Review
Ease of Use
Have you heard of Seeking Alpha? Seeking Alpha is a stock news, analysis, and research platform that includes blogs, articles, and more. The question is, does Seeking Alpha really stack up? Read our thorough review of Seeking Alpha before you spend.
About Seeking Alpha
Seeking Alpha is a stock market news, analysis, and research platform/site that provides articles and blogs for stocks and financial markets. The crowdsourced analysis has some of the most well thought out content that caters to retail and institutional clientele seeking unique fundamental perspectives on U.S. stocks. While there is free content readily available with registration, the site also offers a premium membership that includes more advanced analysis tools and access to premium articles that can materially impact stock prices.
History of Seeking Alpha
Founded in 2004 by David Jackson, a former Wall Street analyst, and headquartered in Israel. Jackson was a sell-side analyst during the internet bubble and realized his hedge fund clients had deeper insights into stocks than he did. His idea was to create a crowdsourced equity research site where the contributors were real investors/players rather than just Wall Street analysts/spectators. He was also concerned that 55% of small-cap companies were getting no coverage from the Wall Street analysts and sought out to fill that void by launching his brainchild. Seeking Alpha has grown in stature, reputation, and content serving over 10-million monthly page views as it expanded its distribution partnerships to have its content available on CNBC, Yahoo! Finance, Marketwatch, MSNBC, NASDAQ, and The Street.
Who Does Seeking Alpha Cater To?
Seeking Alpha mostly caters to swing traders and active investors but is still wildly popular with intraday traders that take advantage of the market moving articles published throughout the day. Articles range from macroeconomic to micro company/stock specific to strategic management and trading ideas. Each article has comments sections that tend to be more informative than the junk or spam found on other message boards. For the most part, the level of conversation on a higher level with deeper insights that found on most internet message boards.
Seeking Alpha caters to sophisticated investors who rely heavily on fundamental research. The research reports and opinion pieces are the stars of the service. With that said, let’s take a closer look at what you get as a premium member.
Seeking Alpha Portfolios
Users can create their own portfolios of watch list stocks to get a custom feed of content as it’s published throughout the day pertaining to their stocks. This can be a one-stop-shop for all news and research for your portfolios. Real-time alerts can be set-up to notify you via e-mail or text whenever news or research breaks on specified equities.
Seeking Alpha has many different categories that users can select for ideas and strategies. The most popular are the Long and Short ideas, where contributors post their articles supporting long or short-selling positions in the underlying companies. Users can utilize a wide variety of tools to gather ideas to apply their own methodologies to equity and options trades. Many trading and investing strategies can be implemented with the analysis, insights, and data pulled from Seeking Alpha content.
Catalysts are event-driven news items that can be found quickly through the On the Move table, which already provides Market Alerts in Real-Time complimentary access for users powered by Fidelity. This is a great tool for intraday traders looking for momentum plays, especially on earnings reports. For active investors, the Seeking Alpha Essential Trending Newsfeed updates throughout the day, covering broader news stories and macroeconomic data. Often, when news hits, an article will pop up shortly afterwards if there is a material price impact. Trending Articles are also a nice place to find catalysts that are impacting price action.
Overreactions to unexpected fundamental news may present short-term buying or short-selling opportunities. Intraday traders focus on gaming the reaction, not trying to analyze the actual news. While Seeking Alpha is very light on technical analysis content, the fundamental and quantitative content is top-notch. I like to pull up data by stock ticker when an overreaction in the form of a large gap up or down presents itself to gauge the catalyst as well as any insights on both sides of the gap. Seeking Alpha is very fast with earnings analysis (IE: XYZ gaps 7% on a + 0.12 EPS beat). They also provide links to the full company press releases, which I like to scan through.
Conference Call Transcripts are absolutely key for researching the most current material directly from the mouths of the CEO and executives. Seeking Alpha is the go-to site for access to the transcripts, which are usually available the new morning or shortly after the completion of the calls. These conference calls can get long-winded, so the transcript is a perfect way to quickly peruse them for material statements. I personally like to analyst the question and answering portion for any clues or remarks that may have triggered a large price move in the underlying shares.
Valuation and Metrics insights on specific companies or industries can be found by stock ticker or through various filters under the Analysis tab. Users can search by sectors, industries, or ideas and utilize the Screener tool.
Trends and Themes of markets, stocks, and industries can be derived from the Market Outlook to Analysis by Sector as well as perusing the top trending articles. You can gather the overall sentiment to help frame a refined narrative to use as a lens when evaluating potential trading ideas and strategies. For example, streaming services may be a bullish or bearish theme that is derived from top trending articles as well as the underlying price action momentum spotted through the On The Move screener. Based on the action, one can formulate a strategy based on valuation metrics that can be derived from the Analysis section or by reading through many of the articles on the underlying players. It’s also critical to read through the user comments as I tend to find very relevant insights there as well.
The goal is to generate the foresight to a step or two ahead of the current market sentiment in order to capture transparency before it becomes too transparent. The problem I often find with “real-time” commentary on financial news networks and sites is they are too busy trying to “explain” why the market moved rather than focusing on what’s next. In essence, they are laggard no matter how much they attempt to imply otherwise. The tools and content from Seeking Alpha can enable users to foster that foresight with the right amount of effort.
Seeking Alpha Marketplace
Additionally, there are a number of services available through the Marketplace where users can subscribe to third-party services provided by many of the contributors—these range from income strategies capturing dividends and high-yield bonds and REITS to undervalued and special situation investments. While many of these services offer valuable insights, they come with an additional charge and are not included in the Seeking Alpha premium membership.
How Much Does Seeking Alpha Cost?
Seeking Alpha is free for most articles upon registration. The subscription-based premium membership is $29.99 per month or $19.99 if prepaid for the annual subscription. The membership provides full access to the site with unlimited conference call transcripts, articles, and investment tools.
Is Seeking Alpha Right For You?
Seeking Alpha is a solid tool for both intraday and swing traders as well as investors. This is a one-stop-shop for fundamental research and tools and exceptional perspectives on specific companies. The articles are insightful and in-depth, as well as most of the commentary from the user community. I give high credit to the moderators for keeping conversations relevant and on-topic. I’ve always loved the name Seeking Alpha as it hits the spot on exactly what the goal of the site is.
Seeking Alpha is a tool best suited for self-directed investors who like to do in-depth research. Ultimately, this platform is best suited for investors who dive deep into their investment research by reading analyst opinions and detailed write-ups if you prefer to be told exactly what stocks to buy and when you may prefer an alert service like Motley Fool’s Stock Advisor.
Is Seeking Alpha Worth the Money?
The premium service at $29.99 per month is a great value. It enables traders to get real-time news and fundamental research as well as access to various tools and opinions. Most importantly, the articles can be market moving and often times are catalysts in and of themselves when the content is especially compelling. The service is definitely worth the money if you use the resources to inform your investments. Once again, this service is catered towards active investors who are heavily focused on research.
- High-quality articles and commentary by knowledgeable traders and analysts
- The one-stop-shop for news, analysis, and market foresight
- High caliber community of users providing razor-sharp relevant conversations and feedback to articles and blogs
- Macro to microeconomic and company research
- Arguably the best source for conference call transcripts in one-spot
- Flexible Portfolio tracking with alerts to push content on specific companies
- So much data and analysis can get overwhelming and hard to keep up with
- Some contributors push too hard to pitch their third-part services in the free articles