Financial information services are provided by independent firms, government agencies, and agencies associated with major investment trading markets. These services compile data that help private investors and companies make decisions, but they do not sell or trade investments. Some financial information services are geared towards helping individuals make wise investment decisions, while others give companies information about industry salaries and trends.
One of the fundamental characteristics of companies that provide financial information services is that they are independent. This means that they do not endorse any particular industry, investment, or portfolio management strategy. Their main purpose is to collect and present data that evaluators can use in their research and decision making process. For example, an agency associated with a major stock market might compile data that reveals the level of compensation that other companies are providing their employees.
By having access to the compensation data, firms can adjust their salary and benefits programs in order to stay competitive. It helps them gauge where they fall in relation to firms that compete for human talent in the same industry. By researching what other companies are paying, a firm may discover the reason why they are unable to recruit and retain quality employees. The data may also show a firm that it has a competitive advantage in terms of its benefits package, a fact it can leverage in recruitment advertisements.
Segmented market data is another type of reporting that is produced by financial information services. For industries that experience frequent technological advances, this type of data can help firms stay abreast of the latest improvements. Aa an example, a managed health care system that operates several regional hospitals will probably want to know how its quality level stacks up against comparable hospitals across the nation. The data can help decision makers implement new procedures that improve the quality of patients' treatments and bring new technology to the system's hospitals.
Some of the information provided by financial information services is geared towards potential capital investors. For example, trends about emerging foreign markets might be compiled, including the names of start-up companies that are seeking funds. This type of information gives investors access to contacts that they might not be able to obtain otherwise. It also facilitates the development of those emerging markets by bridging a connection between individuals who can provide some sort of benefit to each other.
There are some firms that help individuals evaluate their financial positions. They provide information about investment strategies and risks involved with different financial products. Firms of this nature are more geared towards educating end consumers about proper money management, including the proper use of credit and debt financing.