Spy Satellites Offer an Edge on Business Insights

A growing number of start-ups are turning high-altitude surveillance, once the domain of global superpowers, into a business. This according to a recent article in The New York Times. “Businesses will not be able to hide from competitors or regulators or watchdogs,” said Mark Johnson, co-founder of satellite information start-up Descartes Labs, adding, “They need to realize that their traditional competitive advantage—information—will be available to everyone.” The article cites data from research firm Euroconsult that… Read More

Potential and Risk of Personal Data Usage by Investors

“The explosive growth of digital data, along with better tools to analyze and store it, has jump-started a once-niche industry that packages under-the-radar information for investors,” according to an article in Barron’s that argues, “Once standardized, the numbers can be plugged into computers, creating ‘big data’ that helps investors predict.” The article says that many companies known for traditional investing processes are staffing up their data departments, citing Neuberger Berman and JPMorgan Chase as examples… Read More

Hedge Fund Managers Search for Alpha in Big Data

If the world’s annual data generation was loaded into iPad Air tablets, says a recent Financial Times article, “the pile would reach from the earth to the moon more than six times over.” Technology companies can harvest information from consumer emails and online receipts which can then be “scraped, aggregated and sold to investment firms looking for tradable signals, or to use the jargon—’market-beating alpha’.” However, the article explains, “The investment industry’s push into alternative… Read More

Big Data Doesn’t Automatically Mean Big Investment Returns

The quant craze in investing doesn’t come without its own set of challenges, says a recent Bloomberg article. As hedge funds delve headlong into the data world to hoist up returns and stay competitive, some may lack the prowess necessary to harvest relevant and accurate numbers, says Matei Zatreanu, who led the charge at $19 billion hedge fund King Street Capital Management. “There are those who realize their industry is changing and their fund isn’t… Read More