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Alternative Market Briefing

Academics’ analysis of Wikipedia usage could increase investment returns

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Beverly Chandler, Opalesque London: Wikipedia usage could have been used as an early warning sign of stock market movements, according to a new study published today in Scientific Reports.

Researchers led by Dr Suzy Moat, Senior Research Fellow at Warwick Business School, found that changes in how often financially related pages were viewed on Wikipedia could have been linked to subsequent movements of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Their historic analysis detected increases in views of financially related Wikipedia pages before stock market falls.

Dr Moat said: "These results provide evidence that online data may allow us to gain a new understanding of the early stages of decision making, giving us an insight into how people gather information before they decide to take action in the real world."

The team behind the report explained that Wikipedia is a popular online encyclopaedia that all internet users can view and edit and, in addition, it also allows free use of its data on how often people view and edit its pages.

Suzy Moat and Tobias Preis, of Warwick Business School, UK, along with Chester Curme, Adam Avakian, Dror Y. Kenett and H. Eugene Stanley, of Boston University, USA, looked at how often the 30 pages describing the companies listed in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, such as Procter & Gamble, Bank of A......................

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