Spark Global Limited Reports:
When ordinary investors think of the software used on Wall Street, they usually think of The Bloomberg Terminal.
The legendary software was released in the 1980s and was the brainchild of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Today, the software is everywhere on Wall Street trading desks, just as it was back then.
You probably know it from its famous black and orange color scheme and outdated fonts, which give it a uniquely old-fashioned feel.
Note that I can’t access the terminal myself; I just gather information about the product from a variety of primary and secondary sources.
What is a Bloomberg terminal?
Despite its name, the Bloomberg terminal is not its own computer or hardware.
Right now, it’s just Windows software. But back in the 1980s, when Michael Bloomberg invented them, he sold them as personal computer systems, called terminals, and the name has stuck ever since.
It still sounds cool, like “Yes, let me check the quote on the terminal”, even if you’re just opening the software on your Windows PC, like a retail trader opening ThinkorSwim.
Bloomberg terminals are the most in-depth research and trading platform for institutional investors. The amount of data available to users is so vast that even people who have been using it for more than 10 years have barely scratched the surface.
While there is a lot of proprietary data in Bloomberg terminals, the vast majority can be purchased separately from other vendors. The real value is that all the data is in the right place and easily accessible.
For example, suppose you’re a stock analyst covering Apple (AAPL). You can go to sec.gov, find most of the same information, and start building valuation models.
Still, the device compiles all of Apple’s most recent financial statements on one screen, making them easy to view and allowing you to export them to An Excel spreadsheet with one click.
Analysts may be interested in who Apple’s biggest suppliers and customers are. Features like SPLC emerged, and the company’s biggest suppliers and customers were listed in map format. Look at the pictures below.