Bloomberg Essay

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Bloomberg L.P. operates the largest privately owned data, news, and financial information network in the world. It provides real-time and historical information on some five million bonds, equities, commodities, currencies, and funds. Its electronic library also holds data on virtually every publicly traded company and has a collection of biographies on more than one million people. Bloomberg’s customers include approximately 250,000 subscribers at central banks, investment institutions, commercial banks, insurance companies, corporations, government agencies, law firms, and news organizations in over 150 countries. Bloomberg customers benefit from on-demand multimedia content and communications and extensive electronic-trading capabilities through its network. Bloomberg employs approximately 8,000 people in 55 countries.

The core product of Bloomberg is its subscription service that provides data, news, analytics, multimedia reports and messaging, and trading functions to any personal computer. The service is leased for a flat fee of $1,500 per month paid quarterly in advance on a two-year contract. The Bloomberg network delivers a global securities database with historical pricing data and corporate information from more than 200 exchanges including the New York Stock Exchange, NASD, and the Options Price Reporting Authority (OPRA).

Tools and Services

Bloomberg offers a number of trading tools and services. Its electronic trading products are used by portfolio managers, institutional traders, broker-dealers, market makers, and hedge fund managers for front to-back execution, clearing and settlement functions on equities, debt, futures, options, and foreign exchange instruments. Bloomberg’s trading products are used in over 60 global markets on five continents.

The Bloomberg Terminal is the firm’s signature device seen on trading floors around the world, identified by its dual 17-inch flat panels. Users can set up their screens any way they like, typically displaying multiple data and video windows at once. The companion keyboard with its customized keys and biometric security technology provides for the optimal use of Bloomberg information and trading software. The Bloomberg network offers a real-time voice and video system enabling its users to record and send video messages and to participate in one-to-one or multi-caller audio/video conferences.

Bloomberg Law provides law firms a comprehensive source for legal research, including a comprehensive range of case law, codes, statutes, and regulations; dockets, access to pleadings, decisions, adversary proceedings, appeals, and court records; federal and state securities litigation, SEC enforcement and administrative actions, regulatory guidance, legislative activity, exchange, and rulemaking. It offers specialty services in the areas of bankruptcy, mergers and acquisitions, securities, intellectual property, due diligence, compliance, and litigation. It also provides analytical treatises, proprietary reports, updates on client-development intelligence, news, and research. Bloomberg Insurance is collection of research and analysis applications for insurance underwriters and brokers of commercial lines.

Bloomberg News is a real-time news service that provides definitive coverage of companies, markets, industries, economies, and governments serving readers in more than 130 countries, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Bloomberg News offers a wide array of communication services available to the public. These include television and radio programs in seven languages, financial book publishing, an award-winning magazine, and print news carried by more than 400 publications in 70 countries. Bloomberg News employs more than 2,000 reporters and editors in 130 bureaus and publishes more than 5,000 stories on an average day to 400 newspapers worldwide, with a combined circulation of 79 million people.

Bloomberg 1130 (WBBR-AM) is a 24-hour, digital all-news radio station that serves the New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut areas. It syndicates reports to more than 840 radio stations worldwide as well as the Sirius, XM, and World Space satellite radio services. Bloomberg News broadcasts through 11 television networks in seven languages reaching more than 200 million homes. It also maintains an archive of more than 15 million stories and multimedia reports, and a photo library of some 190,000 images.

Bloomberg.com has consistently ranked among top financial Web sites. Bloomberg Markets magazine is the largest monthly magazine for financial professionals in the world. Bloomberg Press publishes practical books for financial professionals as well as books of general interest on investing, economics, current affairs, and policy affecting sophisticated investors. More than 140 titles have been released since 1996. The books are written by leading authorities and practitioners and are published in more than 20 languages.

Bloomberg employs a highly trained, multilingual team of technical operators and engineers to provide customer help 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Bloomberg provides individual and group seminars, special events, and Bloomberg University to train clients and prospects about the information solutions available through its network. It also has a certification program for financial professionals able to demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of its products.

Bloomberg’s headquarters are in a seven-story building designed by Cesar Pelli on Lexington Avenue in Manhattan. The open-plan glass building is designed to be a physical manifestation of the 24/7 global marketplace and of information transparency. The building has some 22 fish tanks filled with exotic rare specimens (every office contains a fish tank) and edgy works of art, from a massive aromatic cedar artwork in the first-floor lobby to a large titanium thundercloud over an escalator. The work layout is nonhierarchical with employees stationed every six linear feet in a long row of desks.

Revenues for 2006 were approximately $4.7 billion with operating profits before taxes of about $1.5 billion. In addition to the firm founders, Merrill Lynch holds a 20 percent stake in Bloomberg.

Bibliography:

  1. com, about.bloomberg.com (cited March 2009);
  2. Carol J. Loomis, “The Bloomberg,” Fortune (April 16, 2007);
  3. Aline van Duyn, “News Chief Stays Hungry for Expansion,” Financial Times (USA) (June 21, 2007).

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