Stock trading isn’t a thing for the elite anymore. It seems like the era of powerful Wall Street brokers is coming to an end.
How it all began
Stock trading for born for the few. Not everyone had access to it and not everyone could be a stock trader. Wall Street had freedom of movement, decision, and influence. Traders decided what was trendy or worth it. With their huge phones and manipulations, they decided what company was the winner. And which one was the loser.
What made trading so selective and exclusive was the tools used by traders. In fact, over 40 years ago there weren’t any apps. Just the Michael Bloomberg terminals.
The Bloomberg terminals
It’s a software system, created in 1981, for professionals in the financial service sector. Hence, stock traders. These terminals allowed traders to:
- analyze real-time market data
- read the financial news
- message other traders
- place trades on the electronic platform
- create calculations
These terminals made stock trading available for only professionals. In fact, they were the only ones with access to them -and that knew how to use them. The system worked so well, few changes have been made since 1981.
Then, ordinary people started being curious.
Technology and stock trading
Forty years later, professional brokers still use the Bloomberg terminals. But the “normal” person uses Reddit, TikTok, and Robinhood. A Bloomberg Terminal is $20,000 per year per user. While the apps and websites are free tools, available to anyone.And out goes the Wall Street elite.
The case of Gamestop
It’s been the buzz of the financial world for the past weeks. But what really happened?
First, it’s important to understand Robinhood. It’s an app that anyone can download, both the stock trader and the grandma. It targets small investors, like the teenager who gains $20 from mowing lawns. It allows users to invest small amounts in stocks, a true stock trading market.
These tiny traders meet online, especially in forums on Reddit. Here, they exchange opinions, tips, and strategies. And, from one Reddit thread, one user shared his love and belief for Gamestop. While Wall Street was trying to drive the price down, users of Robinhood decided to drive the price up. In part, to stick it to the big guy. And they succeeded. Gamestop’s stock reached over $300, breaking all the records.
Needless to say, Wall Street didn’t like it. And the current conversation is about this gap between the financial elite and normal people. The ordinary person wants to enjoy the benefits of stock trading. Will the big guy allow it?
The broker is becoming obsolete
With free apps like Robinhood or TikTok, it seems like the dear old financial professional is becoming obsolete. The example of Elon Stocks proves it. This online tool notifies users anytime the famous entrepreneur mentions a stock on Twitter. This way, people are always aware of the latest trends and they can invest their savings.
But one tool might take over stock trading.
Enter Gamestonk Terminal
A team of seven engineers (including Didier Lopes) created Gamestonk Terminal. This tool makes Bloomberg terminals look like a dinosaurs. It scrapes Reddit, Twitter, and other platforms to measure market sentiment. Also, this tool provides real-time technical analysis. Although currently it’s only available in Python, Gamestonk could take over the market.
As the website Vice reports, “The GameStonk Terminal can issue a stock ticker to keep track of GME and analyze the price as it fluctuates during the day. It can provide a map of S&P 500’s index, pull research and information from Yahoo Finance, Fidelity, Alpha Vantage and other sources. It even provides a direct line to the /r/Wallstreetbets subreddit”
It’s like a Bloomberg terminal. But more modern. And free.
Tools like Gamestonk and apps like Robinhood are precursors of these times. Consumer behavior around stock trading is shifting. People don’t want the intermediary anymore. They want to become their own traders. Wall Street has lost its allure and its mystery. Perhaps rightly so.
Technology is constantly evolving and improving. Even in gaming. Find our more about the cloud gaming trend here.