Downloading free financial data
It’s a bit grungy, but nowadays it’s much easier than it’s ever been. I mean getting financial data. Shockingly, you can get a lot for free. Milton Friedman, eat your heart out. Granted, the data’s delayed. The breadth of available data is as wide as the English Channel, including not only price data, but also fundamental data for specific stocks.
Here are two options which seem quite reasonable:
- It’s possible to import the data directly Into Excel, Edgeseeker has a rather useful and free plug-in, that also has some other features, which gives you a few typical analytical tools used in finance.
- If you want to go closer to the source, you can use YQL (which looks like a soul sister of Microsoft’s OData protocol-or not) programmatically. This returns information in either XML or JSON format, which you can then parse and use however you want. Jarloo has a good summary.
Yahoo finance has much more data breadth than google finance, and it has for a while, so you are probably best off sticking primarily with them for most “consumer-level” needs. They use tickers that look like Reuters RIC codes, but I’m not sure of the exact details on that. Both of these sources give lots of international data. They should be enough to get any budding model builder, like you, off the ground.