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11/20/01 01:50:35 PM PST
by Han Kim

Self-proclaimed as the "web's smartest and highest-quality financial discussion community," offers more than mere financial chatter., currently owned by Go2Net Inc., gained its claim to fame via message boards online gathering places where individuals congregate to discuss all sorts of interesting financial topics. Now the site (Figure 1) has grown and become a source for timely data, research, news, editorials, and more. You can get the annual reports of more than 4,000 companies, monitor the market, get to know the analyst upgrades and downgrades, track market movers, and get a snapshot of the bond markets.

Figure 1: has become a source for data, research, news, and more.

At first glance, is similar to most financial information websites. The contents of's homepage are straightforward. The layout is logically organized, making it easy to follow: When you first bring up on your browser, you will see abundant links: links to other sources of information, links to tools for charting and analysis, and even more links to current affairs around the world.

Although has been evolving and expanding to add value to its website, what sets it apart is the vast number of ongoing, intelligent discussions about financial issues.

For the casual visitor, there are several useful tools available on the site, such as quotes, charts, initial public offerings (IPOs), and market monitoring tools. In addition to the tools, everyone has access to StockTalk, the discussion forum (Figure 2). If you are only interested in doing research, no special registration is necessary. However, if you enjoy having a site tailored to your tastes, you will need to become a registered user.

Figure 2: StockTalk, SiliconInvestor's discussion forum, where the financial discussions take place.

Registered users enjoy several additional benefits. Among them is the ability to build and maintain multiple portfolios, customize charts, and perform stock screens (Figures 3 and 4). After registering, you can use SiliconInvestor e-mail and customize your website settings so it is even more user-friendly for your specific needs. does a great job of gathering a variety of information and tools in one place. Add to that an excellent financial discussion forum, and there you have it a great source of financial information.

Figure 3: Market Tools menu.

Figure 4: Use the Stock Screener tool to find stocks that fit your criteria.

Getting the most out of requires you to be a premium member. Even a casual visitor will find this site very useful, but if you want to be more than a lurker (for example, if you want to participate in the message boards), you have to register. The price for premium membership is $120 per year. This may seem a little high just to gain the privilege of posting messages on the StockTalk discussions, but then again, it is a small price to pay to query and get feedback from this feature-rich financial discussion community.

Han Kim may be reached at

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Han Kim

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