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Investext

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Service/portal name: Thomson Research (http://reserchthomsonib.com)

Source description: Since the early 1980s, Investext has been the largest database of company and industry analysis available.

Collected from many of the world’s leading investmet, consulting and market research firms, Investext provides an exceptional source for detailed company, industry, and geographic data in-depth analysis, and forecasts.

The product is considered a basic resource for business and investment research. Though often used to access equity research information for its detailed company analysis and forecasts, Investext provides ready entry to industry analysis that can often deliver a depth and breadth of information unavailable elsewhere.

Investext on Thomson Research is a combination of four major research resources: Investext, MarkIntel, Industry Insider, and a new Morning Meeting Notes database.

Pricing: Pricing for Investext through Thomson Research is variable, but costs as much as $2,000 can occur for multiple company/industry searches.

Dialog pricing, too, is variable, and depends on the amount of time spent searching, the articles and format for reports an articles, and the Dialog interface chosen (i.e., DialogClassic, DialogWeb).

Source content: This summary will review the key offerings of Investext on Thomson Research (http://research.thomsonib.com) in four content collections: Investment Research, Market Research, Trade Research Association, and Morning Meeting Notes as follows:

1. Investment Research. The main and traditional Investext database is a collection of millions of reports from more than six hundred leading investment and brokerage firms.

Written by many of the financial services industry’s leading analysts, reports found onInvestext provide company, industry, geographic current data, and financial forecasts for more than sixty thousand domestic and international companies.

Although high prices, Investext is often a solid starting point for gathering primary and secondary company research and analysis.

2. Market Research. Also known separately as MarkIntel, Market Research provides access to primary research and statistics from more than 145 of the leading independent market research organizations, such as the Yankee Group, Datamonitor, IDC, and the Gartner Group.

Although similar to investment research reports in format, market research reports are almost exclusively market-or industry-focused, and often provide current and forecast statistics in greater depth than other research resources.

3. Trade Research Association. Also known as Industry Insider, Trade Research Association is a smaller compilation of research from a variety of key professional and trade associations that generally track their industries for the benefit of their members.

Research provided is usually from a collection of sources, both primary and secondary, and often contains industry insights not found in other publications.

4. Morning Meeting Notes. A collection of research notes released from the major brokerage hourse, Morning Meeting Notes are excellent sources to track a company or industry that is undergoing rapid change.

Updated daily, these briefings also track macroeconomic changes and commentary from many of the leading equity and fixed income analysts on global and American markets.

Source evaluation: Investext is an invaluable business research resource. Although costly, it provides an unsurpassed collection of millions of research reports from more than a thousand research driven investment, consulting, and market research firms.

Often a mandatory resource in the financial community, Investext is an excellent “first source” for large industry and market studies and is an exceptional point of access to leading analysts.

The key limitation of Investext is the lack of “real-time” updating of reports. Most reports can take weeks to become available because of limitations imposed by their providers.

Additionally, although the cost per page is reasonable given its value, the cost of whole reports is still too high, especially given tower-cost option available elsewhere.

The arrangement of Investext’s full search screen on Thomson Research follows a standard pattern: Company or Ticker, Industry (by name, SIC, or NAICS codes), Region (geographic), Title & Free-Text Searching (FT search available only since 1999), Date, Contributor (corporate), Author, Collection, Report Number, and Date

This organization is fairly straightforward and intuitive for the beginning searcher. Additionally, the look-up functions provide solid search-refinement tools.

Help windows are available and fairly solid, although the help function lacks true interactivity with a user’s level in search and retrieval.

Additionally, the Show Criteria window on the initial search page and on the results page is exceptionally useful for editing searches on the fly.

The best feature about the database, however, is the ability to customize almost all search and display settings, which allows each user to deliver a highly tailored research product.

The only real flaw I found is that the static Support tab available on the upper right-hand corner of every page lists only the phone numbers and e-mails of regional technical support. This link would be more useful if it were to refer the user to the available Help files.

For first-time users, Thomson Research offers a simple Company search page that allows for searches by Company Name, Ticker, and Industry (by Industry name, SIC, or NAICS codes).

This is a fine initial search engine for pulling industry and company reports. However, it lacks the ability to limit a search by anything other than the above indexing and is not recommended for anyone other than the most inexperienced researcher.

Source value rating: All of the data source reviewers were asked to rate each source on the basis of the following eight categories, using “10” as the highest rating and “1” as the lowest (“80”) being a perfect score):

1. Relative cost-to-value   7
2. Relative timeliness of data:   7
3. Relative comprehensiveness of data:  8
4. Ease of use:     6
5. Search options available:   8
6. Level of support services:   7
7. Level of training offered:   6
8. Amount/kinds of special services offered: 7
Total Rating:     56

Useful tips
• Always try to complement your Investext usage with Multex, which provides full analyst research reports for hundreds if not thousand less than Investext.

However, keep in mind that Investext provides superior indexing and is the only resource that allows you to view tables of contents and puchase only the pages you need of analyst reports.

Additionally, both Multex and Investext have significant overlap, but each does offer its own exclusive sources.

• Unless you are looking for speciic research notex, ignore any report fewer than five pages long (>5), especially during earnings report seaons. These are often only a regurgitation of a company’s press release, which can be found for free or for little cost.

• Excellent industry and company reports are often available when as analyst initiates coverage. Try to look for these, as they often provide incredibly detailed studies of, and methods for, evaluating companies, industries, and geographies.

• Stay away from Corporate Technology Information reports and older reports from Market Guide.

They provide no original forecasts, jsut a restatement of earnings reports with basic financial ratios and other information available from alternative, less expensive sources.
 

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