Travelgnome alerted me to the news that google has finally launched a beta of their financial news service, Google Finance. They certainly have a long way to go to catch up to Yahoo! Finance, but I like the looks of where they're going.
Right now, their initial offerings seem aimed at investors in research mode and not much else. But the "web 2.0"-ness of the integrated research tools are impressive to me as a n00b investor.
The chart of stock prices is particularly slick looking and my favorite feature of this view is that recent news items are pegged to the stock price so you can see the impact (if there is one). This doesn't seem to appear on all stocks (yet?) ... I didn't see the news items represented on the price chart for CompuCredit (CCRT), but it was there for both google (GOOG) and Coca-Cola (KO).
Another feature that is technically "cool" is that when you hover over each person in management you might get a picture. I don't really think that's of value to the everyday investor, but it *is* pretty neat in a geeky-integration-of-data way.
After you have completed a few stock searches, the main page is updates with your recent searches and news that is relevant to those ticker symbols. The main page is pretty sparse and useless until this change...and even then it's not terribly exciting.
The portfolio tool is sort of sad, but I'm glad they launched at least enough of it to enable data entry. At this point you can enter the symbol, cost, and number of shares and the portfolio will show you all the totals. I can't wait to see what they do with this though, it is what I am most excited about. Google, get yer graph on and make that portfolio sexxxxxy!
I'm only just beginning to learn about investing so that has colored my opinions. More than anything I am excited to see how they improve the overall service, but I'm glad they got it out the door so we can all take a peek.