There are thousands of stocks up for grabs every time the stock markets open. And unfortunately, it’s not humanly possible to analyze all of them in order to trade or invest. But with stock screening tools, it’s possible to do that and at the same time save time, remove behavioral biases and identify new opportunities.
Talking about opportunities, Trade Ideas and FinViz are two of the largest platforms for anyone looking to have their finger on the pulse of the stock markets. So, what factors set these fierce rivals apart? Which is the best stock scanner of the two? Here’s our head-to-head comparison.
About Trade Ideas
Established in the early 2000s, TI remains one of the most popular scanners on the market. The award-winning platform comes with built-in scans which provide you with an opportunity to identify opportunities in real-time. As such, some people have likened TI to an endless pipeline of trading ideas.
What’s more? The platform is highly flexible since it’s designed in such a manner that you can customize it to your liking. On top of that, it comes with simple, drag-and-drop features which make it possible to make changes without the need for coding language.
One thing you’re likely to notice about TI, especially if you’ve been trading for quite some time, is that their services have evolved through the years. Innovation is perhaps the main engine behind all this. The good guys at TI seem to be really focused on launching user-friendly innovation particularly ones designed to encourage automated trading.
FinViz (FV) is commonly described as a stock and market research tool which can be used for technical and fundamental analysis. And just like TI, FinViz seems to bank on innovation in the quest to grow and access wider markets.
Their system is data-driven and, unfortunately, this means that you’re likely to find lots of stats especially on their home-page. But that should not worry you because you can always tweak the system to your liking. If anything, FV has built-in filters and heat maps which can provide you with a bird’s eye view of the markets.
Perhaps the most interesting thing about FV is that most of their services are available for free. But then, you have to put up with all manner of adverts. All in all, this is a great place for anyone who would like to get deep insights into forex, futures, and stocks.
Much as these two platforms are owned by two different companies, they share several similarities. So before we even start highlighting their differences and making our verdict on who is best and why, let us start by appreciating their commonalities.
1. Stock Screeners
The two boast built-in stock screeners. And using these screeners, it’s possible to get a grasp of the fundamental, technical and descriptive metrics. What’s more? The tools provide quotes, charts along with other useful pieces of data. As you know, without data, it becomes nearly impossible to make moves. Therefore, we’re indeed glad to note that these two provide you with the “meat” you need in your stock-picking decisions.
Both services are really big on news which is an important part of running a fully-fledged fundamental analysis approach. Access to breaking news and latest happenings in the financial markets can help you make some highly accurate decisions. Without a tool that collects the important news headline for you’ you’d need to scour different news platforms on your own – and that would mean wasting a lot of time.
Historical data is a crucial part of a successful trader’s life. And with backtesting tools, you get the tools you need to reconstruct historical data. That alone can go a long way in helping you choose the most effective trading strategy to embrace at any given time.
If you’re looking for a great charting platform, both TI and FV would be awesome platforms to check out. And the best part is that in both cases, you get to access customizable charts along with the tools one needs to study trends. And as you know, charts provide you with a perfect platform for putting your indicators to use in addition to providing you with an opportunity to eyeball price action.
5. Customer Support
Good customer support is the key to learning how to trade especially when using proprietary software. We’re indeed glad to see that both TI and FV take their customers seriously. And in addition to having lots of helpful materials on their websites, they also have manned support desks. Once again, this is a big plus especially if you’re a greenhorn and wouldn’t mind getting someone to hold your hand and clarify some issues for you.
By looking at the list of similarities reviewed above, you might be tempted to think that these two services are equal. And even though both are great, the following differences are what in our opinion separates the men from the boys.
Although the two offer free, limited accounts, it’s FinViz that seems to offer a much better deal in terms of cost. With FV, you can trade for free without an account or upgrade to a free registered account to access screener results and 50 screener presets.
However, if you’re looking to benefit from advanced stock charts, email alerts, 100 screener presets and backtesting tools, you’d need to pay up for the FinViz*Elite plan which goes for $299.50 or $39.50 per month.
Under Trade Ideas, it’s possible to start out with a free limited account. But unlike FV where you have the opportunity to get more features with a free registered account, in TI, you have to sign up for a paid account to upgrade.
The standard plan, which is also the entry-level plan, goes for $1068 or $118 per month. As you can see, it’s a bit more expensive than the FinViz*Elite despite offering features that are almost similar.
The premium plan, the highest tier under TI, goes for $2268 or $228. That’s insanely expensive. But you need to keep in mind that this is where the advanced market intelligence robot, Holly comes in.
In our view, instead of going for the TI Standard Plan, you can start out with the FinViz*Elite especially if you have the time to get acclimatized with the system. The entire FinViz site is quite crowded and it takes time to learn how to use it. So, go for it only if you’re willing to exchange your learning time for the extra dollars you’d need to pay for a TI Standard Account.
But to this end, the TI premium plan remains a one-of-a-kind package. It may be pricy but if you can afford it, we’d encourage you to go for it.
2. Money Back Guarantee
You don’t want to risk your money without the reassurance of getting it back in case things don’t go as expected. And that’s why money-back guarantee is an important factor to look out for. With FinViz you get a 30-day money back guarantee while TI offers a 5-day refund period minus a $10 fee. FV’s money back period is longer than that of TI. We think that TI is a bit overconfident with its services which is quite common a trend among industry leaders.
But all in all, just know that you get a slightly longer trial period with FV than with TI.
3. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Algorithm trading has been cited as the revolution that will shake up Wall Street. That might be a bit of an overstatement, but if you’re looking for a system that’s capable of making predictive models for you, then AI is a must-have.
In our view, AI may not completely replace manual trading but it will certainly complement it. And that’s why we’re glad to take note of the many benefits that the Trade Ideas’ Holly system has to offer.
Holly is designed to scour the markets for you. And by taking an all-around look at the prevailing market situation, she goes ahead to provide alerts. Your job is to study these alerts and then decide whether to buy or sell stocks based on these stats.
FinViz might be doing all it takes to maintain a good stock screening platform but they for sure are yet to catch up with TI on this front. So, hands down, TI takes a commanding lead as far as AI is concerned.
Final Thoughts & Verdict
If all you’re looking for is a cheap platform that provides you with a growth curve, FinViz would be a good place to start. If anything you can set up a free registered account and access most of their services at no cost. However, you’ll have to put up with quite a few video ads.
The FinViz*Elite plan is worth trying especially if all you’re after are charting and backtesting tools. It doesn’t make much sense to go for a Standard TI plan is these are the kind of tools you’re after.
The only thing that makes TI less desirable to us is the huge upfront fee and the fact that you have to part with to access their premium tiers. Therefore, if you’re operating on a shoe-string budget you might want to keep off their services.
Who would we recommend Trade Ideas for? We’d recommend it for anyone who desires an easy to use and highly advanced platform. Their premium plan is particularly good for anyone looking for timely alerts. You, however, need to be prepared to cough out quite a few bucks for these.
Verdict: There’s no outright winner here. You simply need to choose the option that makes sense to you, keeping your budget capacity in mind.