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Alternative Market Briefing

Hedge funds are using spy technology to gain competitive investing edge

Monday, September 16, 2013

Precy Dumlao, Opalesque Asia:

Hedge funds are apparently using spying technology traditionally used by the military to gather intelligence to gain a competitive edge before making an important investment decision.

A report by the Financial Times claims that some hedge funds have hired satellite imagery providers to monitor risk exposures, particularly in the areas of mines, ports, farmlands or plantations and even to determine if a store is attracting customers.

One service provider of satellite images and intelligence to hedge funds is RS Metrics, a Chicago-based firm which claims to provide corporate, investor, and government clients with proprietary data based on quantitative analysis of high-resolution satellite imagery, demographic data, and open-source research.

The firm was recently hired by hedge funds to provide geospatial images to track fill rates at Walmart’s car park.

The satellite imagery on the parking lot traffic provided by RS Metrics confirmed that the second quarter was looking up for Walmart, and expects positive U.S. traffic growth that was announced by the company in mid-August.

"Walmart traffic measurements can be used as a......................

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