3rd April 2012
I start my day reading The Times on the tube. Today, for example, I was particularly interested to read about the RBS results – which are everywhere. This is the kind of company story that I look out for and might affect markets.
Clearly I also look for the ongoing stories on the Eurozone problems, with the most recent update being the second bailout of Greece.
When it comes to equity markets, most are reasonably correlated, so I'll check the performance of the FTSE first, then the others in no particular order. To do this I use my iPhone and iPad and find the Bloomberg app particularly useful to give up-to-the-minute information on what's going on in markets – and I also have a few companies that I follow personally for my own portfolio and can check their performance using this. I get general market news from Reuters.
I use my iPad an increasing amount because of the size of the screen and ability to read things in-depth and write longer emails.
During the day, I'll visit a broad range of sites when I have time. I don't have a specific routine but find there are a lot of sites that will give me a useful digest and find I'm always aware of what's going on as a result. These include Investment Week, Citywire, FT Business, Fundweb, and Trustnet. I tend to read the trade publications on a Monday morning – and some others later in the week when they come out, and skim-read the headlines to get a sense of what's going on.
I spend a portion of the day away from the office but that doesn't mean not having access to news and emails these days. There are two sides to what I do with relation to the media – trying to think of useful stories to assist national journalists that tend to be trend based from what I've seen or heard from fund managers, while trade journalists, on the other hand, tend to focus on hard news.
I am a tweeter. I follow a variety of news alerts, such as the BBC financial news tweet, and then financial journalists such as Paul Lewis on Moneybox. I use Twitter entirely for work and if out and about one refresh of the app on my iPhone will tell me anything important that's happened – typically about 30 times if it's something like a base rate decision! I tend not to follow blogs but use Twitter for an update on people's views and their latest posts, and these will direct me to the specific blog if I want to read more.
I find a mix of technology and face-to-face meetings is the right balance. You can get information swiftly through websites, but my role is also to speak to people in the industry about longer-term trends. Balancing the daily noise of news updates with fund manager meetings focused on long-term trends that will make money for clients is helpful.