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Contextualising Your Data

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By Simon Smith, Granger Smith Consulting
www.grangersmithconsulting.com

The ever growing amount of digital data available poses a real challenge to current search solutions, because they could potentially lack relevance, timeliness and adaptability. BI systems have traditionally focused upon structured data, for example; costs, margins and sales, and it is now becoming essential for a reporting tool to provide unstructured data and for both sets of data to be integrated.

Twitter, Facebook, rolling news sites and other forms of unstructured data can have a massive impact on a share price. Yet being able to trawl and search through all this information is far too time consuming when it comes to the continually evolving trading markets. By the time you have manually searched for the reason behind the change things have already moved on and the information you took the time to research is out of date and irrelevant. People are talking about something new, the latest drama has unfolded and you’re still searching for yesterday’s news.

In order to bring together this data you need a system which is more specific than search and broader than feeds. It needs to have the ability to scan multiple sources from the internet channels and social media, databases and internal systems to find the most relevant information on your topic of interest and update it continually. The unstructured data is then fed back into your internal system and provides a contextualised picture of your data.

Take for example, a company dealing with private placements and capital market transactions. It is important for such a business to be able to track and observe market trends for private equity and other alternatives, and ensure information about prospects is always up to date.

Our partner Squirro, a leading context intelligence product and search technology, is working with Evercore Partners (PFG) to centrally aggregate relevant news and put in place a more efficient research, monitoring and tracking process of existing clients and also key prospects.

A layer of real-time integration and support has been added for examining private markets which are largely dependent on proprietary research and market intelligence. Sachin Mitra, UK institutional market coverage at Evercore Private Funds Group, says: “The layer of real-time integration added into our CRM, is creating dynamic and topical feeds that contribute to our knowledge of individual existing clients, prospects and markets, ultimately adding value to our research and follow up capabilities.”

Combining structured and unstructured data in such a fast moving market is imperative to ensuring a complete overview of a share price is instantly available. Arming traders with such knowledge is much more powerful than just knowing that a price has varied. Why has that price varied? What has made the price change? Which groups of people are the main influencers behind this price change? It is these types of questions which can be answered by joining the two sets of data.

With the ability to directly deliver results to any mobile device, traders can constantly stay up to speed with the latest changes and the exact results they require. As soon as something hits the internet, that data could be sitting in the palm of a trader’s hand. The constant evolution of social media and instant access to news means traders need to embrace unstructured data and combine this into their daily working practice.

When it comes to big data, being able to bring together structured and unstructured data is a vital process to understanding what that information actually means and the effect it is having on a share price.

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