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Am I right in assuming that a company's financial news/statements are first released on their website? If this is the case then isn't it possible to keep an eye on the website around the time of release - allowing you to get early access to it so you can use that information to trade before other investors flood in?

Edit: I see everyone saying yes this can be done for profitability but don't companies release statements and other financial news AFTER the market has already closed?

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    Usually they send to the SEC (EDGAR) first - not sure if this is an actual law or if they are just covering their own interest - then to the website/public. You might be able to get in before the individual investors but not before the institutional investors due to technology and resources. – Ross Dec 2 '15 at 20:32
  • @Ross Does EDGAR contain press releases? I thought it only contained the standard filings (10-K, 10-Q, etc.). – Ben Miller Dec 2 '15 at 20:43
  • @BenMiller No just the filings from what I've seen. But usually they filings are on EDGAR before they put them out on the website on the few companies I've tried to get the drop on (without success .... CNBC is pretty fast at decimation). – Ross Dec 2 '15 at 20:45
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In the U.S., publicly traded companies are under the rules of Regulation Fair Disclosure, which says that a company must release information to all investors at the same time. The company website and social media both count as fair disclosure, because every investor has access to those outlets, but a press release newswire service could also be the first outlet. (What is forbidden by this regulation is the practice of releasing news first to the brokers, who could inform certain customers of the news early.)

I think that the first outlet for press releases could be different for each company, depending on the internal procedures of the company. Some would update their website first, and others would wait to update the site until the press release hits the newswire first.

  • Note that release at the same time doesn't mean that you find out about it at the same time as a major broker who's paying more for higher speed data feeds, or that you can respond as quickly as they can. The game is fair in the sense that everyone's playing by the same rules, but you're allowed to buy the best equipment you can afford. – keshlam Dec 3 '15 at 3:09
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Yes, there are very lucrative opportunities available by using financial news releases. A lot of times other people just aren't looking in less popular markets, or you may observe the news source before other people realize it, or may interpret the news differently than the other market participants.

There is also the buy the rumor, sell the news mantra - for positive expected information (opposite for negative expected news), which results in a counterintuitive trading pattern.

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No matter how a company releases relevant information about their business, SOMEBODY will be the first to see it. I mean, of all the people looking, someone has to be the first. I presume that professional stock brokers have their eyes on these things closely and know exactly who publishes where and when to expect new information. In real life, many brokers are going to be seeing this information within seconds of each other. I suppose if one sees it half a second before everybody else, knows what he's looking for and has already decided what he's going to do based on this information, he might get a buy or sell order in before anybody else. Odds are that if you're not a professional broker, you don't know when to expect new information to be posted, and you probably have a job or a family or like to eat and sleep now and then, so you can't be watching somebody's web site constantly, so you'll be lagging hours or days behind the full-time professionals.

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