For the first time, retail investors can conduct social research on publicly traded equities and their associated brands through Twitter in their brokerage accounts at TD Ameritrade, Inc. ("TD Ameritrade"), a broker-dealer subsidiary of the TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation (AMTD).
The new research capabilities are the result of a collaboration with social media firm SwanPowers LLC, making TD Ameritrade the first major online brokerage firm to give this level of social media functionality to individual retail investors.
Tracking social media sentiment and volume via Twitter can help investors discern trends, as well as offer potential clues into a company’s health and future prospects compared to competitors. TD Ameritrade’s new integrated social media tab aggregates a company’s information in one place – including social sentiment and volume, earnings reports and more – saving time and breaking down the information into an easily digestible, concise format for retail clients. Similar social sentiment tracking tools have only been available previously through professional trading platforms.
“Industry trends and our own research show us that engaged investors view Twitter as a destination of choice for getting a more comprehensive view of how a public company and its associated brands are faring,” said Kevin Finn, managing director of eCommerce at TD Ameritrade. “Consumers are continuing to weave social media into their daily routines, so we thought it was important to continue to level the investment playing field for our retail clients and integrate Twitter into our award winning research offering.”
Regardless of how frequently retail clients use social media – or if they do at all – TD Ameritrade’s filters enable investors to discover and make sense of what others are saying about a company and its associated brands on Twitter. After logging into their TD Ameritrade account on the company’s flagship website, retail investors enter a stock’s ticker symbol in the global search box at the top of the screen and select the new “Social” tab on the Stock Summary Page to see what Twitter users are saying about a company, including:
- Selected Recent Tweets. Recognizing that Twitter can be an overwhelming fire hose of chatter, TD Ameritrade provides a curated list of relevant Tweets about the company and its related brands and products, regardless of whether the company, its ticker symbol or cashtag are mentioned in the Tweet. Tweets are filtered by SwanPowers, based on a number of factors including re-Tweets and favorites, and are refreshed in near real time.
- Social Volume. Clients get the total number of English-language mentions on Twitter of the company, its brands and products, in the past seven days.
- Sentiment Indicator. This shows the percentage of positive tweets about a company and its associated brands. The Sentiment Indicator and Social Signals provide clients with data to compare the social sentiment and volume on Twitter between different companies.
- Most Tweeted Brands. Here is where investors can see a list of the top most-tweeted products and sub-brands connected with a company. With Apple, that might include iTunes, iPhone, and iPad. For Microsoft, that might include Minecraft and Xbox. Clients may discover connections between brands and companies that they hadn’t known about previously.
- Trending on Twitter. TD Ameritrade clients can keep up with what’s getting the most attention on Twitter as well. This module is where they can see the most-shared links relevant to traders and investors about companies and brands, as well as other topics of high interest.
TD Ameritrade clients can see the social content even if they don’t have a Twitter account. Clients who are logged into their Twitter accounts can engage with the Tweets as they would ordinarily do – i.e., re-Tweet, respond, indicate a favorite, or follow another Twitter user.
“For the first time, retail investors can get crowd-sourced market insight and up-to-the-minute intelligence on a company and its products and brands,” said Finn. “We are proud to lead the industry by enabling our retail investors to harness the power of social media for their investing ideas.”
TD Ameritrade plans to continue to expand upon its current social media functionality throughout the year to bring even more capabilities to its clients.
The social data discovery, filtering and analysis are provided by SwanPowers, LLC’s LikeFolio. SwanPowers and TD Ameritrade are separate and unaffiliated firms.