Alternative Data Weekly Newsletter Archives

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A curated digest of must-read news from around the internet about alternative data. Join the buy-side professionals already reading the Alternative Data Weekly.

April 2017

Asia investors boost use of unorthodox data sources to beat benchmarks

Reuters

BlackRock continues to push the envelope on alternative data, using satellite imagery to better understand the Chinese economy. Read More

Analytics firm uses 1 trillion social posts to predict stock movements

Business Insider

Social media listening tools used to sell specifically to brands and media companies. But with eight years of data from social posts, Crimson Hexagon adds value to Wall Street. Read More

How Chipotle’s comeback attracted big data robots and value investors alike

Forbes

Pershing Square isn’t alone in their billion dollar burrito bet. Other opportunistic funds used various alternative data sources to bet on a post-scandal Chipotle stock. And they couldn’t be happier with the results. Read More

Hedge fund Coatue invests in Domino Data Lab

The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Coatue is betting Domino can become for data science what Microsoft Excel is for financial analysts. Read More

AI will not replace the analyst

Markets Media

“To say that quantitative research is a fully automated function within the trading world is to confess your blindness to what actually is required of trading strategies.” Humans 1, Machines 0. Read More

MapD Technologies adds distributed processing to GPU-powered analytics platform

PR Newswire

If you need off-the-charts performance for visualization of very large datasets, have a look at the release details for version 3.0 of MapD’s flagship product. Read More

Neudata names Stephen Morse Advisor in the US

MarketWatch

Big data and fintech guru Stephen Morse joins Neudata’s platform to partner with and advise hedge fund and other asset managers on alternative data. Read More

A legal perspective on using drones for investing

ZwillGen Blog (video)

It may be tongue-in-cheek but this video offers good intelligence on what to look for if using drones to collect alternative data. Read More

Firing on all cylinders: The 2017 big data landscape

LinkedIn

Matt Turck of FirstMark Capital pens his annual, long-form “State of the Union” writeup of key trends in big data and artificial intelligence. Read More

Hedge funds close in on designing the ultimate trader’s brain

Gulf News Money

Will deep learning solve the general problem in investment management? WorldQuant, Winton and several other quant funds aim to find out. Read More

AI quantitative and DIY funds: The landscape

LinkedIn

Fintech venture capitalist Etienne Brunet lays out the competitive landscape of quant and DIY funds who are disrupting a $3.2 trillion industry (infographic included). Read More

The dark secret at the heart of AI

MIT Technology Review

No one really knows how the most advanced algorithms do what they do. That could be a problem. AI expert Will Knight explores the possibilities. Read More

How big data is automating portfolio management

Huffington Post

AbleMarket’s Irene Aldridge explains big data analysis technique Singular Value Decomposition in this contributed piece for The Huffington Post. Read More

What is quantamental?

Medium

Quantavista Labs is developing a quantamental analysis platform and positioning itself as a leader in this emerging space. Here founder Michael Ho takes a stab at creating the definitive guide. Read More

Jeff Bezos lays out Amazon’s three-pronged approach to AI

Quartz

As one of the world’s leaders in technology and innovation, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos lays out the company’s approach to AI in his annual shareholder letter. Read More

New report projects $7 billion in spending on alternative data by 2020

Opimas

Opimas puts some hard numbers behind the alternative data space: 21% growth year-over-year, $7 billion in spend on data and infrastructure, 5% excess returns. Full report only available to subscribers (but worthy detail in the summary!) Read More

Beyond the hype of big data: An interview with Quandl’s Abraham Thomas

Q4

Toronto-based Q4 sits down with Quandl Chief Data Officer, Abraham Thomas, who breaks down big data and says the machines aren’t there yet. Read More

The new buy-side winners as big data takes over

eFinancialCareers

Citing Opimas’ $7 billion figure, this post suggests that while some jobs will be automated, others will be created to source and make sense of all the data. Read More

Steven Cohen just gave millions to crowd-sourcing hedge funders

Fortune

Quantopian has begun allocating some of the money invested by Steven Cohen to trading algorithms coded by freelance computer scientists, as it steps up its efforts to disrupt the hedge fund industry. Read More

When it comes to picking stocks, humans are so passé

NPR

NPR’s Planet Money is covering Wall Street’s growing interest in technology that powers investment decisions. This week’s episode illuminates the one key piece of this shift — the business of buying and selling data. Read More

Auto data start-up Otonomo raises $25m, led by automotive supplier Delphi

TechCrunch

Those interested in the auto industry: take note. Israeli-based Otonomo secures $25 million in Series B funding to grow its marketplace. The company connects car makers and drivers with service providers, optimizing the monetization of that data. Read More

Quants skeptical of big data, machine-learning hype

Institutional Investor

Not everyone is totally on the BlackRock bandwagon. Some believe asset managers may be overconfident about their abilities to find signals in big datasets that best current strategies. Read More

Conference Alert: Third Annual FinTech Exchange, Chicago, April 27

FinTech Chicago

This Chicago event is the best opportunity to learn about all things fintech. The first five people to register with the discount code “QUANDL” will receive a free pass. Enjoy the event! Read More

With 125 PhDs in 15 countries, a quant ‘Alpha Factory’ hunts for investing edge

The Wall Street Journal

Find out how Igor Tulchinsky put WorldQuant at the forefront of quantitative investing. Read More

Data mining can pump up returns if done right

Institutional Investor

Summarizing the “Rise of the Machines” panel at DataDisrupt, Institutional Investor concludes that data-driven quants are in better shape than their counterparts. Read More

BlackRock signals active overhaul with shift to quant

FTAdviser

This follow-up to last week’s BlackRock announcement provides more detail on how exactly the fund giant plans to make way for the machines. Read More

Trading places: The rise of the DIY hedge fund

Wired

Wired covers the rise of the DIY quant, a phenomenon made possible by platforms such as Quantopian, Numerai and Cloud9. Read More

Former Credit Suisse execs start AI firm

eFinancialCareers

Two senior Credit Suisse staff members join forces to create an AI advisory and intelligence company that aims to keep pesky — and irrational — human emotions out of investment decisions. Read More

Francesco Corea summarizes his takeaways from London’s Big Data Summit

Medium

One of the top experts in AI condenses what he learned at this year’s Big Data Summit and talks policy, privacy and talent. Read More

1010data launches shopping center alternative data product

Yahoo Finance

1010data launches “1010data Shopping Center Insights,” an alternative data source that helps track the performance of leading shopping centers across the US. Read More

AI and big data to generate and consume investment research

Markets Media

This piece applies the theory of big data to both buy- and sell-side firms with some strong examples from the field, including BlackRock and Morningstar. Read More

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