Strata Conference 2012 - Script


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Strata Conference 2012 - Script

  1. 1. STRATA CONFERENCE!Financial Data and Journalism - How Bloomberg Makes Data Work1Hello everyone,My name is Marianne Bouchart and I’m the Web Producer EMEA atBloomberg News. I’m also in charge of initiating data journalism projectsand visualisations around Europe, Middle East and Africa.And I’m here today to talk about How Bloomberg News Makes DataWork…2We have the chance today to have in this audience a vast range ofpeople from various backgrounds, some of you may work in verydifferent industries but there’s one thing that brings us all together todayis that we believe in data and we believe not just in data itself but in allthe ways we can Make It Work.And at Bloomberg, making data work is what we love doing.You don’t need to be an investor or a stock broker to know that theworld’s markets have a massive impact on our everyday lives.Whether it is the euro zone crisis or the Libor probe or even Facebook’shistoric Initial Public Offering, financial data and what mediaorganisations make out of them have become crucial.The question we will raise during this session is how a financial newsorganisation like Bloomberg handles data on a daily basisand to give you a grasp of how financial data is used and howBloomberg News is making the most out of it by developing excitingprojects in data journalism and interactive visualizations on all itsmultimedia platforms.3What’s Bloomberg? 1/11
  2. 2. STRATA CONFERENCE!So when you think of Bloomberg, the 1st thing that comes to mind is4this, right? Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York. And that’s a veryfair 1st impression since he is the founder of Bloomberg L.P. he createdit in 1982, and it kept on evolving since then!All quite reassuring so far..What’s maybe a bit less reassuring is that the second thing that comesto mind when thinking about Bloomberg is:5a bunch of words: Data, Finance, Markets, Complicated, NicheMaybe a bit scary...Right, and that’s also quite a fair comment. But although it’s true that thecore product of Bloomberg is mainly targetted towards a niche audienceof investors and people working in the financial industry,I’ll try and prove you during this session that we actually producecontent for a far broader audience, not just in finance, but in subjectssuch as sports or politics. And in ways that you may not even expect..and I hope I’ll achieve that today…6People ask us all the time whether we are a technology company, amedia company, a data company, or are we an information company?And in many ways, Bloomberg is actually all of the above.7With headquarters in New York, the company employs more than15,000 people in 192 locations worldwide. 2/11
  3. 3. STRATA CONFERENCE!Bloomberg LP is the world’s most trusted source of market-movingnews, data and analytics targeted to help professionals make moreinformed business and investment decisions.And that’s the core of the Bloomberg Professional® service, whichprovides real time financial information to more than 310,000subscribers globally.8The Bloomberg terminal used to be a cumbersome, physical piece ofhardware but today9the means of delivery has now shifted.Subscribers can access the mix of market information, business newsand financial analysis over a range of devices including10iPad,11BlackBerry, and Android smartphones.12In numbers (because it’s always sexy to just pile up some stats andfigures during a data conference)Bloomberg News is an award-winning news service, created anddistributed from 146 bureaus in 72 countries.It has over 2,300 news and multimedia professionals that produce morethan 5,000 stories daily, which are distributed via the BloombergProfessional service, on and syndicated to 430publications in 67 countries. 3/11
  4. 4. STRATA CONFERENCE!13Financial Data at BloombergWe get data from over 11200 different sources which go from brokers tobanks or research and analytics companies, but we also compile data ofour own.Our clients include investment firms, corporations, commercial andcentral banks, government agencies and high net-worth individuals.As many companies decide to cut down on services and staff,14Bloomberg is actually expending and announced in May this year that itacquired software provider PolarLake and is launching a new EnterpriseData Management (EDM) service to help companies acquire, share,cleanse, manage, own and distribute data across their organisations.EDM, for those who may not be familiar with the term, is the process bywhich a firm manages reference data through its entire supply chain:153.All this mix of market information, business news and financial analysis can be used by investors to help them make decisions, but it’s also used by over 2,400 news professionals and journalists.All journalism at Bloomberg is somehow data journalism.It is in our culture. We are the only media organisation in the world withsuch resources in terms of financial datasets. Each reporter is givenaccess to a Bloomberg terminal and therefore to thousands if notmillions of datasets on different subjects ranging from finance, businessto sports or politics… 4/11
  5. 5. STRATA CONFERENCE!And reporters have thousands of ways to look through the data and givedepth, context to their stories.16And one of the first functions that we use on the terminal,Equity + GP <GO>is the Price history Graphthat gives us the history of Apple US Equity over the years,To give you a grasp of how much data we are dealing with here, we canfor exampleuse the News function and see why is the price so high on Sep 14…and it’ll bring up all the news item from that day that can explain the datafrom the graphSPLC <GO>Journalists can also use a function called SPLC, which is quite sexy andstands for Supply Chain. It gives us all of the company’s Suppliers andCustomers. That’s where you realise that over 40% of Apple’s cost go toHon Hai Precisio, which is quite interesting.BI <GO> Bloomberg IndustriesBloomberg Industries offers interactive and continuously updatedindustryresearch and data for business and financial professionals.the team is made of over 100 analysts who cover over 100 industriesacross Europe, North America and Asia.They create and manage in-depth data and analysis for eachindustrys drivers, metrics, competitors and earnings. 5/11
  6. 6. STRATA CONFERENCE!The BI portal is also very useful for data journalism as it aggregatesinformation from more than 200 third-party providers, creating one of thelargest central repositories for analysing an industrys past and presentperformance, as well as future forecasts.COUN <GO>ex: United Arab EmiratesAn other function that reporters like to use at Bloomberg is called COUNwhich brings up a sort of fact sheet on a specific country. You obviouslyhave the financial snapshot, but also (Economics tab) information onGDP, Unemployment, (Profile) and some more general information...and a mapTalking about maps…BMAP <GO>For people who fancy graphics,we also have a tool called BMAP that compiles various data such asEnergy Assets, global wind farms, earthquakes, etc...- Financial (data) journalism at Bloomberg NewsAll these functions, these millions of datasets we have compiled in thisterminal really gives an edge to Bloomberg News in terms of datajournalism.It’s quite unique, in a way, and sometimes mind blowing. I mean you canspend hours trying different combinations and cross referencingcompanies results and analyse a countries’ debt.And most of the time, for the past three decades, we’ve been doingmost of this on the terminalfor Bloomberg professional usersIt’s only recently that we have been developping data journalism andvisualisations projects for the web, that appeal to a broader audience 6/11
  7. 7. STRATA CONFERENCE!17As many data journalists would tell you, a data journalism project startswith an idea, whether it comes from a journalist, an editor, or a graphicdesigner… Once someone comes up with an idea, different people fromdifferent department (News, graphics team, analytics, rankings) gettogether to try and make it happen.18--> The Fed’s Secret Liquidity Lifelines: how we make ground-breakingdata journalismOne of the best examples so far is an interactive data visualisationcalled the Fed’s Secret Liquidity Lifeline. Aug. 2007 and April 2010, the U.S. federal reserve provided asmuch as $1.2 trillion in pnublic money to companies and banks to helpthem cope with the crisis.We got hold of some 480 CSV files, 29,000 pages of documents andFed spreadsheets showing which companies or banks got theemergency liquidity, how much and when. In totalThe data revealed for example how the Fed helped finance Barclays’purchase of Lehman Brothers’ assets by supplying both firms withliquidity until the deal closed. That allowed Barclays to keep more than$40 billion well into 2009.19data made available here :) 7/11
  8. 8. STRATA CONFERENCE!It took about 4 months to put this together, mainly because we had towait for Freedom Of Information requests to get through… And it wasbuilt from scratch by David Yanofsky, using javascript.20An other example, which shows how Bloomberg News tackles all sortsof data, and not just financial one, is this data visualisation calledMeasuring the U.S. Melting Pot. all started with the idea that many people in the U.S. describethemselves not just as Americans but as Irish-Americans or German-Americans. This graphic illustrates a Bloomberg compilation of data fromthe Census Bureau’s 2010 American Community Survey.You can explore the results of the survey and see the distribution ofother heritages across the country. Select an ancestry from the menu onthe left to see its concentration, county by county, then choose one fromthe right to compare their relative prominence in a region.That’s for the more longer term projects we have…21On a day-to-day basis, we try and bring data to life in some simple buteffective ways…Like with this story we did last week about Bill Clinton’s popularitycompared to Obama’s.. shows the results of a Bloomberg National Poll conducted betweenSept. 21-24 which asked 1007 people how they felt about these differentpeople. It shows that People LIke Bill Clinton better than Obama, butalso they prefer George W Bush to Mitt Romney, I let you make you’reown opinion on that piece of information... 8/11
  9. 9. STRATA CONFERENCE!22As I said earlier, the terminal is one of the most comprehensive, up-to-date databases in the world. When we use data from the terminal for theweb, the graphics are usually interactive, contain a lot of data and areupdated regularly.One of the things that Bloomberg is famous for is also our BillionairesIndex. Billionaires’ team and our graphics team work together on thisinteractive index that gives a daily ranking of the world’s 100 richestpeople.As it says above, the graphic tracks the list’s top 20 billionaires over thepast 70 business days.They have a combined wealth of over $500 billion.. that’s a lot…Viewers can scroll over the squares below to see how their fortuneshave changed day-to-day.And if you Click a square, you can read the Bloomberg storiesexplaining the events that drove those changes.To view the full list click here.It all started with an idea from on of our interactive graphic designerSeth Myers, who just happens to sit next to the Billionaires team in theNew York office. He heard them talking about the ranking and thought itcould make a good graphic.And we are doing more and more of these collaborations betweendepartments...23CCL 9/11
  10. 10. STRATA CONFERENCE!In fact, we’ve put together a new data visualisation team who will becreating interactive visual products for the web and make the most ofBloomberg data.24Bloomberg recently hired Lisa Stausfeld, who used to do informationvisualisations for the New York Times, as the global head of datavisualisations.25Many people will tell you that NOW is the time for data visualisation andBloomberg agrees with that and is committed to taking a position in theworld of data visualisation.So look out for exciting projects we’ll be launching soon hope this talk was useful to you,26I’d like to thank Seth Myers for helping me out putting this informationtogetherand I’ll be in the Sponsor Pavillion (Table B)between 2:30pm and 3:20pmwith 2 colleagues from Bloomberg’s Global Data team to answer all yourquestions…Joakim Nilsson and Agustina de Marotte 10/11
  11. 11. STRATA CONFERENCE!27Thank you! 11/11