5 must-have apps for trading in 2016

Millions of people use millions of apps every day. According to Statista.com, at July 2015, Android users had more than 1.6 million apps to choose from, Apple users a mere 1.5 million…and that number continues grow exponentially. Assuming just 1% of those apps are finance-related, that’s still a staggering 1,500+ apps to choose from.

Here are five that can make your life a little easier.

1. StockLight

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Availability:  Apple and Android

Cost: FREE, but a range of in-app purchases required to get the most from it; monthly subscription also available

Ratings:  4.5 stars (Apple), 4.3 stars (Android) – significant number of ratings

Most finance apps are US-centric, particularly so for those offering stock specific and market coverage. Some offer recognition of other markets – some even cover a smattering of ASX-listed stocks. StockLight is uniquely Australian, with a longer-term plan to cover other markets.

StockLight was inspired by investment guru Benjamin Graham’s value investing bible, The Intelligent Investor. This is the book that another investment guru, Warren Buffett, described as “By far the best book on investing ever written.” 

The app offers a comprehensive newsfeed that can be configured to group all the news for stocks in your watchlist into one place; this includes price sensitive announcements issued to the ASX, 'insider' director trades, research articles and dividends.

StockLight can sort the ASX by price earnings ratio, dividend yield, market cap, industry, upcoming dividends and StockLight’s quantitative ratios. It includes a number of research screens, such as stock overview and recommendation, company info, and historical dividends. The quantitative analysis screen provides a quick visual summary of how many ratios have indicated a green light for the currently selected stock.

The research articles and buy/sell recommendations from premium research providers require an active subscription from the research provider – this is on top of any in-app purchases required.

A 15 day free membership includes a no obligation trial of all features.

2. Scutify

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Availability:  Apple and Android

Cost:  Free (plus paid premium content)

Ratings: 4.0 stars (Apple), 4.0 stars (Android)

Want to hang out in social media land with fellow traders from around the world? Scutify is a social network built around the sharemarket. Users can build a watchlist and with the tap of your finger, bring up detailed information about a specific stock, pulling in relevant tweets and news articles. It covers stocks in Australia, the US and UK, Canada and India, and intends to build this out over time.

Scutify enables its community to post questions – known as ‘scuttles’ – that let investors and traders share the latest news, as well as ask questions about stocks or market activity. It’s a little more fulsome than Twitter – users get up to 280 characters to pose their scuttle or respond to another’s. Images can also be posted. Like Twitter and other social networks, users can follow other traders and investors.

Stocks, indices or currencies are identified by using the $tag before the relevant stock code; for example $BHP or $NAB. Note: Twitter has recently started to recognise the $tag.

Scutify also offers premium content from professional analysts and financials for publicly traded companies – at a cost.

One of the interesting inclusions are the sentiment rankings. Scutify users can indicate whether they are bullish or bearish about a stock; this is then aggregated with other users’ sentiment and allows you to see what the Scutify community thinks about a stock.

There is a (minor) downside – some screens are quite cluttered and best viewed a tablet or desktop.

3. OnMarket

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Availability: Apple and Android

Cost: Free

Ratings: 4.0 stars (Apple), 4.4 stars (Android) (note: ratings based on a small number of reviews to date)

Launched by Malcolm Turnbull in October 2015, this home-grown app meets embodies two of his passions – innovation and finance. It aims to shake up the primary investment market by making capital raising more accessible to retail investors. Or in the words of the people behind OnMarket, to “democratise access to capital raisings”.

The app provides an overview of upcoming capital raisings – size of offer, price, open and close dates, and enables the user to bid for stock. It also provides access to company releases and independent research.

And what if a capital raising isn't available through OnMarket? It encourages users to join campaigns aimed at convincing the company in question to offer the IPO or placement through OnMarket. Current campaigns include retailer ShaverShop, real estate giant LJ Hooker and several government privatisations – Port of Fremantle, Port of Melbourne and NSW electricity assets.

4. StockTouch

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Availability:  Apple devices only

Cost:  FREE (in-app purchases available)

Ratings:  3.0 stars (based on a limited number of ratings)

StockTouch harnesses the power of data visualisation. It uses color-coded heat maps to illustrate trends in sectors and companies. For example, shades of green indicate stocks that are gaining in value, while shades of red indicate stocks that are losing in value.

Users can monitor both price and volume, as well as review historical data of a specific stock. The app enables you to drill down into each stock to see market-related stats, charts and recent news coverage from all over the world.

StockTouch covers the top 900 stocks in the US, as well as the top 900 global stocks. In all, it covers more than 5,000 companies, provides around 40,000 charts and 50,000 news stories.

Downside – not all ASX stocks are listed on StockTouch. Also, the app works in landscape mode, which isn’t to every user’s liking, especially on iPhone.

5. AllMyShares

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Availability: Apple devices only

Cost: $5.99

Ratings: 4.0 stars

If you want an app that monitors the performance of your portfolio/s, this is it. Catering for stocks listed in Australia and most other developed markets (as well as a few emerging markets), AllMyShares displays data in both visual and report form so users can understand how their investments are performing.

You can create an unlimited number of portfolios and these can contain both listed and unlisted investments. A range of portfolio analyses are available, including dividends and franking, transactions, gains/loss ladder, cash outlaid ladder and market value ladder.

Downside – a new user needs to invest some time entering details of each investment; once done however, it should be a painless process to keep up to date.


 ∞

While that’s five, given it’s the start of a new year and it’s likely that many of you reading this made some sort of new year’s resolution…here’s a final app to consider. Accordingly to researcher Neilson, the top two resolutions for Australians this year were to:

  1. Stay fit and healthy
  2. Lose weight.

In case you missed it, sugar is now public enemy number one. It’s making people overweight, leading to a massive increase in type 2 diabetes and is being blamed for heart disease and a number of cancers. It’s found in all sorts of unexpected places, processed food is jammed with it – and this includes so called ‘healthy’ options.

The people that brought you That Sugar Film (the sweet equivalent to Supersize Me) have developed an app to let you gauge how much sugar you consume each day.

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Availability:  Apple and Android  Cost: FREE

How much is too much? According to the World Health Organisation, your daily intake should not exceed nine teaspoons for males and six teaspoons for women.

The app contains an extensive data base of Australian foods, as well as a nifty barcode scanner to enable you to easily determine just how much sugar is in that mid-afternoon pick-me-up.

Banana bread? An average slice has between 5-7 teaspoons of sugar. Fancy a muffin? You’re up for 5-12 teaspoons. Going for chocolate to fight the mid-afternoon slump? A Mars Bar contains 5 teaspoons.

Surprise yourself and measure your daily intake.

Wishing you a successful (and healthy) year ahead.


 

 General Advice Warning
This information is current as at that date of the document or information is provided or presented unless otherwise specified and is provided by OpenMarkets Australia Ltd (ABN 38 090 472 012, AFSL 246705 (OpenMarkets).  The information is intended to be general information only and not advice specific to any person.  Each person should consider the appropriateness of any material presented having regard to their own circumstances and the information provided does not take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs of any person.  OpenMarkets does not warrant the accuracy of, nor accept any responsibility for any information provided.  Where examples, hypotheticals or case studies are used, they are used for illustrative purposes only.   If the information includes statements of opinion, forward looking statements, forecasts or predictions based on current expectations about future events and results, any such statements are subject to change and actual results may be materially different from those shown.   

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