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The Globe and Mail has updated our online stock-quote pages. This is a major remake to the pages, which tens of thousands of readers use every day, so we would like to explain the rationale for the change and offer some details on the modifications.

Many readers have reported data errors on our stock-quote pages. We know that the data on these pages is used to make decisions that affect our readers’ success and wealth. In order to address this, we have switched data providers for all quote data, corporate fundamentals and ratios on these pages to Thomson Reuters. We believe this will fix the incorrect and out-of-date information from our previous providers. Data integrity is a core value for us and we aim to have all data verified as accurate, have internal consistency and be delivered as quickly as possible.

Our website has also been prone to crashes that make the entire website, not just stock-quote pages, to be unavailable. We’ve heard from many readers when they see the dreaded spilled inkwell. The technology that powered the old layout was one of the root causes of this and we are switching vendors to one that features a robust, triple-redundant architecture for stock-quote pages. We expect this to improve performance for these pages and the website overall.

The old layout for these pages was five years old and we are also introducing a new design. This will make the in-depth data easier to navigate as all of the key metrics are consolidated on a single page and the stock-quote is always locked at the top of your desktop, laptop or tablet screen.

All of these platform changes have helped us to add greatly improved charting functions. For instance, the new format allows you to switch to 12 more timeframes directly from the page. We’re really excited about the full-screen interactive charting, which you can open by clicking or tapping on the grey rectangle at the top-right of the chart. The new interactive charting has 24 technical-analysis indicators, compared to two before, can plot splits and dividends, allows a comparison with mutual funds in addition to stocks and indexes, suggests comparisons from a carefully maintained peer group and is available in five more chart styles than before. The plot area is dynamic and you can zoom in to any custom timeframe you like as you drill in to more information.

You can use the comparison chart below to learn more about how the page has changed.

Feature Old Layout New Format
Stock-quote data Data included a quote delayed by 15 minutes, today’s change, % change, open, previous close, high, low, bid, ask, volume, 52-week high, 52-week low, beta and market cap Same data points plus YTD % change, average 10-day volume, average 1-month volume, average 3-month volume as well as a comparison to the S&P TSX, but placement is under Key Company Metrics in the right rail
Earnings data Data included trailing P/E, P/E 1 year forward, forward PEG and trailing EPS Same data points included under Key Company Metrics
Dividend data Data included indicated annual dividend and dividend yield Same data points included under Key Company Metrics
Price history Limited to the last 30 days Available on rollover of interactive charts on a daily basis for the complete timeframe of the stock
News headlines Latest five headlines from The Globe and Mail and selected Associated Press, Bloomberg, Canadian Press, New York Times and Reuters wires Latest 10 headlines from these providers as well as Reuters Financial News and volume for the last three months
Financial statements Twelve years of quarterlies and annuals with GAAP only EPS values accessible on a separate tab Four years of quarterlies and annuals with diluted EPS values adjusted for extraordinary items as well as normalized EPS values to remove unusual items using a standard methodology to make values more comparable
About information Exchange, industry, three top officers and contact information Same information and also includes sector and all officers
Analyst recommendations Data included the change over time and analyst breakdown by rating Data now only includes the current rating from Reuters Estimates and the date of the last change

Our stock-quote page readers demand constant improvement and quality information and we are always looking for ways to increase added value for Globe and Mail subscribers. Because of this, some exclusive content will now only be available to subscribers with digital access to The Globe and Mail. Charging for digital access will help us continually invest in premium features.

The chart below shows what is available for free and what requires a subscription.

Feature Public Access Subscriber Access
Stock-quote data Data included delayed by 15 minutes Real-time stock quotes with the 15-minute delay removed for the Canadian exchanges, TSX and TSX Venture
StockReports+ No access Score and PDF report on 2,600 Canadian and 4,200 U.S. stocks
Analyst target price No access Analyst consensus target price over the next year included under Opinions & Forecasts
News access Metered at 10 article reads per month and some articles, such as Streetwise, ROB Insight, Inside the Market and Reuters Financial News restricted to subscribers Unlimited access to all articles
Charting New full-width interactive charts Full-width plus full-screen interactive charts with pre-set technical-analysis studies
Competitive analysis Now subscriber-only. Old Layout included a list based on stocks close in market cap with a 1-day % change, 5-day % change, 1-year % change, trailing EPS, average analyst recommendation, market cap and dividend yield Peer group carefully maintained based on competitive set with revenue growth, profit margin, debt-to-equity and return on equity analysis and histograms all under Stocks & Investments
Events calendar Now subscriber-only. Old Layout had last and next earnings, surprise, dividend and split dates Events Calendar section powered by StreetEvents with average rating history, conference call dates and links, earnings and dividend analysis
Earnings analysis Now subscriber-only. Old Layout had a table of historical and projected EPS values for quarterlies and annuals Quarterly and annual, historic and projected EPS and revenue included with an analysis of the latest period versus consensus, last year’s results, three-year growth rate and industry average
Financial ratios Now subscriber-only. Old Layout included return on equity, current ratio, debt-to-equity, price-to-sales, price-to-book and price-to-cash flow New format includes revenue growth, profit margin, debt-to-equity, return on equity, current ratio, gross margin, and net income per employee
Social media Now subscriber-only. Old Layout included the latest stream of mentions on StockTwits StockTwits activity included

Some things haven’t changed. You still access a stock-quote page by typing the stock symbol or company name in the search box next to The Globe and Mail masthead at the very top of every page on the website.

We’re rolling out these changes now to address the data errors and site stability and there are a couple of shortcomings with the New Format that we are working on. The first is access to press releases from Canadian providers like CNW and Marketwired or U.S. providers like Business Wire and PR Newswire. The second is a feature to add to your Globe Investor Tools Portfolio or Watchlist. We are working on both and expect these to be available in the coming months.

We’re always interested in your suggestions on these pages and will read and respond to the comments on this blog post.