Before I get into the Benzinga Pro news service review, I wanted to share a quick update as to why I started to use this resource.
It all started back in March 2020. Like many pages on the Afternoongrind, I talk about how I started to daytrade. The journey continues to amaze me. I’ve done really well with my process, but I’ve been looking for more.
I’ve always known about news, but I never really knew how to take advantage of it. It always seemed like the move already happened.
A friend of mine, who is also a professional trader constantly talks about newsflow. “Nothing is setting up, so I’m going to trade news flow”, is what he says. I’m like, what is news flow and how do I take advantage?
To make a long story short, he uses several different news squawk services and looks at social media outlets to get a leg up on news. One of the news squawks he uses is Benzinga Pro. I’ve known about Benzinga since I started trading but I didn’t actually use the service until recently.
Actually, it was the Benzinga pre-market prep show that got me really interested in Benzinga. They do a great job while keeping you entertained before the market opens.
After talking to my friend about news trading for a few weeks I pulled the trigger. I paid for the annual subscription and I haven’t looked back.
My news trading entries and exits have a long way to go, but I now know why my friend loves newsflow so much. You too may soon love it as well.
By the end of this review, you will likely have a good feeling of what it is all about. Although I cover a lot of material, keep in mind, I did not cover everything.
Table of Contents
What is Benzinga?
Well, to be honest, it’s a bit confusing. They have a lot going on. There is a Benzinga and then there is Benzinga Pro. The free version of the service is a content driving machine but isn’t necessarily what you need when executing a news trade. For now, I’m going to focus on the pro service.
Let’s get into the review.
News Squawk – Charlie
We’ll start with the most important part of the news service, the SQUAWK.
Charlie will connect you to the news in the fastest way possible. Assuming you are trading and watching your screens, you won’t be watching text-based news or watching CNBC.
Charlie Gross, someone I do not know personally is speaking to the masses of traders on a daily basis. From 7:00 am to 7:00 pm the man is cranking out news for us to hear. Yes, 90% of it won’t really affect our day, but it is still good to know what is happening. It’s when the news is important is where the money is made.
- Breaking News
- Options Activity
- Volume Spikes
- Earnings Announcements
- If it is important Charlie mentions it.
The only downside to Charlie and it isn’t really him, per se, is the fact that he will deliver the news a touch slower at times. There is always someone that knows something quicker than the rest. He has to get the news from somewhere, so it’s those times when he is one of the first, is when the trade is meant to be.
It’s important to understand when you get this service, that late news will happen. The other thing that I’m still getting used to, is his voice. Sometimes he says the symbol so quickly, I then try to get the phonetic spelling and I completely miss the move.
In the first couple of weeks, I noticed events were announced, I would rush to the symbol and notice nothing has happened. I say to myself, okay, I guess this isn’t going anywhere. Within a few seconds of that, you start to see volume pump in, and at that point, you have to react. It pays to be first.
Below, I talk about how I manage the news squawk.
Since the service is web-based, you have to use an Internet browser, such as Google Chrome. I do find local applications run a little smoother than a web browser application, but that is my opinion. At first, I was running into an issue with my sound. I was either disconnecting or for some reason, the sound would mute. Within a couple of days, this issue went away.
The nice thing about the browser app is that you can create tabs just like in your browser. Right now, I’m only using one tab, but that is because I don’t need a ton of extra information. The layout is very accommodating and you can save the tabs as well. This is a great product for researching market information. You really have to dig in and learn the layout on your own. There are a lot of little buttons and settings to make it the way you want it.
You can see the screenshot below. This is the main tab I look at. Since I don’t have enough monitor real estate, I do have this minimized most of the day. I do bring it up a couple of dozen times during the trading session to read the news feed. Below, I will break down the different sections you can add to your Benzinga tabs.
Besides the news squawk, the news feed is what I use the most. It’s an ongoing ledger of what was either said, missed, or pertinent to the day trading day at hand. I come back to this when I miss what Charlie says or after I take a break. This will catch me up on anything that may have been announced or is now in play.
You can also filter your news feed to whatever you want. I keep it fully open since I trade all stocks.
If you click on the symbol in the news feed, it will populate the Details window with that particular stock.
Although the newsfeed is pretty straightforward, be sure to dig in and adjust the settings for what works for you.
The details pane is a nice way to get the profile information about the stock you want to trade or research. You can get key data from price, charts, financials, float, and much more. If you are used to going to Yahoo Finance for this information, Benzing Pro will be your new go-to.
This is something I’ve been using more and more. This is how I know who is reporting earnings, the day’s IPO’s, dividend dates, and so much more. I was really surprised how much data was in this calendar. It can be somewhat overwhelming, but you can use the filters.
Analysts Ratings – This is something I look at every day. I can pick the day I’m trading and determine who has a new analyst rating. The nice thing is, I can filter those down even further. For example, if I only want to see companies with initiation or an upgrade, I can do that. This helps me really focus on those stocks that could move that day.
IPO’s – You can see in the image below, one of the topics is IPO’s. I can select this feature and the calendar will show the upcoming new offers.
You can get this information on free sites, but this breaks it down the way you would want it. The noise is removed and it allows you to quickly scan.
Although I haven’t created any watchlists within Benzinga Pro, I may start doing so. My broker allows me to create all kinds of watchlists, but this is a great way to create sector watchlists. I can create an EV, COVID, POT, Bitcoin, or whatever else I wish. It is pretty straightforward.
Signals & Movers
The mover’s section of Benzinga Pro is nice. It allows you to set certain parameters and watch for stocks that are on the move.
The Signals section is nice as well. You can look for price spikes, Option Activity, and more. This allows you to keep an eye out for fast-moving stocks. You can set notifications on your desktop or by using a sound.
For both the movers and signals you will want to add filters to rule out the stocks that you don’t want to see even if there is a trigger. I think this is the most important part of setting these up.
They have a chat feature within the browser application. I believe it is more noise than anything, so I keep this feature closed.
Benzinga YouTube Channel
I knew about Benzinga before I started trading, but it was the Benzinga Pre-Market Prep show on YoutTube that got my attention. During the middle of the pandemic, this was a great resource for getting me ready for the day. I suggest you check it out once in a while. They have great guests that provide different views of the market. You can find the channel here.
Webinars and Emails
Although slightly annoying, the moment you signup for the free trial you start to get hit with emails and texts. They aren’t pushy, but it becomes a little too much. In my case, having the guy text me helped me out with my sound issue.
You will get a webinar email once or twice a week. Although some of these may be worth your time, I didn’t feel like it was necessary to get so many emails about them.
For a growing company, I feel like I still got some attention. The gentleman answering my texts was courteous and answered all of my questions. I also emailed someone and got an answer really quickly. Now that I’m a customer they really want me there for life. They do put in way more effort than a lot of other companies these days.
They also have plenty of videos you can watch from old webinars to how-to videos. These were really helpful when I was getting my first layout together.
Price of the Service
The price of the service will depend on when you decide to purchase. I’m pretty sure you can get a coupon code all year long. Also, if you think you will be at this a long time, I suggest you go with the annual subscription. This will also save you a lot of money vs. month to month.
They do have an add-on options activity feature, but this is not something I need. I decided to forgo this option.
Since I signed up for the annual subscription and with a Benzinga Pro Coupon Code, I’m paying around $80 a month. I believe this is a very fair price for what you get. There is a lot going on behind the scenes and the value is definitely there.
How Do I Use It Right Now?
I started my Benzinga Pro service on a Free Trial. This trial lasted about 7 days. By the end of the trial, I knew I wanted this news trading service.
I watched a couple of videos on how to set up the web application. These videos really helped speed up the learning curve. I easily would be missing out on so much if I didn’t watch.
I went for a pretty simple layout. I have my newsfeed, my details window, and my calendar. That is all I need on the active workspace.
In the morning, I will check the calendar of all analyst ratings and IPO’s for that day. I also turn on the news squawk inside the layout. I can easily pause or mute Charlie at any time. Once the bell opens, due to monitor real estate, I minimize the window. I would say about 3-5 times an hour I’m opening this window to briefly read the news feed. The squawk doesn’t cover everything, so this is nice to have.
When I do hear something that sounds good, I will change the symbol on Tradestation and see if it is worth pulling the trigger. I check the chart, volume, and tape and that is when I decide. If I want to enter a trade, I will then use my hotkeys on my Elgato Stream Deck for fast execution. If you want to trade the news you have to be fast.
Final Review Thoughts
If you made it through this whole review you must be really interested. At the least, you have a better idea of what the Benzinga Pro service is all about. I probably left out some items that should have been discussed, however, I don’t think I left out anything super important. Become a Zinger? This Binzinga Pro review is was here for you.
I don’t have a running tally on the number of news trades I’ve taken, but I can say I’ve paid for at least half a year of my annual subscription. This is all in a few weeks trading small share size. Once I really start feeling the flow of both the news announcement and the tape, I will start increasing share size. I think this can be 30-50% of my daily gains going forward.
If you have any questions about this Benzinga Pro news trading review please leave me a comment below. I’d be happy to tell you anything else you may want to know. I may even have a nice working coupon code for you.