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A stock market application programming interface, or API, is a system that delivers historic, delayed or real-time financial data. APIs offer information for not only stocks but also exchange traded funds, exchange-traded notes and options.
If you display market data for your audience, you’ll also find APIs that carry financial news, analyst actions, earnings reports and other data valuable to traders and investors.
APIs give you a treasure trove of data, often at a very affordable price. In the past, you may have paid thousands of dollars each month to provide the same information to your audience.
Best Stock Market APIs
To bring your audience the tools they need to create successful trading or investing strategies, you need a reliable data source.
You can choose from a number of affordable data sources that include small businesses operating on a shoestring. You can send the data from these API sources directly to your clients’ or users’ mobile or desktop devices.
Popular stock market API developers include Bloomberg, Refinitiv, Barchart and Intrinio and many others.
Benzinga also offers a suite of API products. Let’s take a look at some as well as APIs from other providers.
Best for News: US Breaking Newswire
To provide market updates through your app or website, Benzinga’s U.S. breaking newswire, or BZ Wire for short, might give you a great place to start.
It carries real-time headlines along with full length stories from the Benzinga editorial team. These breaking news reports give up-to-the-minute insights on stocks from every sector and industry. To get a sense of how this looks in practice, you can find these articles streaming on the Benzinga Pro platform, as well as on popular brokerage sites, including TD Ameritrade, Webull, TradeZero and more.
Among other topics, the newsfeed includes:
- Food & Drug Administration actions
- Stock splits
- Corporate events
You can filter your newsfeed by sector, ticker and news category.
Best for SPAC Details: SPAC IPO
Special Interest Acquisition Companies (SPACs) rank among the hottest investments right now. A total of 165 SPACs went public in 2020, almost twice the number from 2019.
The Benzinga SPAC API gives your users an edge over this fast-growing category. It delivers timely information to follow a SPAC from the moment it forms through its IPO.
The database lists all publicly traded SPACs, along with their valuations, stock float, shares outstanding, insider lockup data and all of the details you need to invest confidently.
Best for Real Time Market Data: Barchart Quotes
Use the getQuote API from Barchart to provide stock-price information either in real-time, delayed or end of day. You’ll find the data organized by ticker symbol for not only stocks but also indexes, exchange-traded funds, mutual funds, cryptocurrencies, foreign exchange and futures.
If you want to offer your customers and readers a way of doing a deep dive into securities’ back stories, Barchart offers getHistory. GetHistory’s historical data presents data in different time frames, suitable for various trading and investing styles.
Best for Earnings: Earnings API
Benzinga’s earnings API offers coverage on all domestic stocks. In addition to earnings updates, it includes Wall Street analyst estimates so your audience can easily see if the company missed, met or beat expectations.
Benzinga uses an exacting process to gather and present earnings data. Analysts review the earnings companies report, using the lens of generally accepted accounting principles. They check for discrepancies or non-compatible items that may result in an unwanted — and not useful — apples-to-oranges comparison.
This doesn't just mean poring over data on a screen. Benzinga’s staff picks up the phone and calls Wall Street analysts if they spot something in a report that may need clarification. Benzinga analysts make 1,200 calls each quarter so that your users have extra confidence in the data.
Best for Analyst Ratings: Analyst Ratings API
When investors and traders research a stock, they want to know what the pros at big institutions think of it. Institutional buying or selling can push the price sharply in either direction.
Fortunately, Benzinga’s analyst ratings API aggregates Wall Street analyst recommendations and ratings as well as upgrades and downgrades. When you incorporate this API into your feeds, your customers receive 120 to 150 analyst actions so they can apply these insights to their investing and trading.
You’ll see overnight ratings changes 3 hours before the U.S. markets’ opening bell, with other new actions posted throughout the trading day.
Best for Company Meeting Dial-in: Conference Call API
When companies release quarterly earnings reports, a conference call occurs during which senior managers add detail to the report and take questions from analysts.
These calls shed light on business growth drivers or headwinds that may inhibit growth. Senior managers, including the chief executive officer, chief financial officer and others generally provide a glimpse into the quarter ahead, even if the firm doesn’t formally give guidance.
You can give your customers an extra edge by offering them a way to listen in on the actual calls. Sure, reading a transcript of these calls helps. But the conference call API provides a greater benefit, allowing your customers to hear the emotions and tone of voice when managers tell their company’s story.
Benzinga’s conference call API gives you a listing of dates and times, as well as a number to call or a webcast link so your customers can listen in on the call.
Best for International News: Financial Content
A balanced portfolio consists of stocks from around the world but it’s not always easy to get accurate information about non-U.S. equities. However, API providers like Financial Content offer a suite of APIs for global business news and stock market data.
What are Stock Market APIs?
Stock-market APIs provide the backend data feed that your customers will eventually see on your investing website or app.
These APIs feature real-time and historical data on various categories of securities, including stocks, bonds, exchange-traded funds, commodities and options. Your customers can use this data to develop a technical trading strategy, to build a fundamental case for a long-term investment or to monitor broad market strengths or weaknesses.
Pros and Cons of Stock Market APIs
- Convenient, inexpensive access to financial data for display or analysis
- Access to the same information as professional investors
- Real-time news and actions so that your users rely on your platform
- Risk of information overload
- Price can get high depending on the provider and specific dataset
- Developers must zero in on which APIs are best for their users
How to Build Your Brokerage
Building your brokerage requires a few simple steps. You must be licensed to sell investment products through FINRA, NASAA or SIPC. Your business must register with the SEC using form BD, and you must have an idea of how you wish to earn an income.
Decide if you want to trade your own accounts or invite customers who need assistance. If you are building your business by growing your customer base, you need less money to get started. However, some brokerages have grown massively by trading their own accounts.
As you build out your website or mobile app, you should determine which APIs you want to include, including those listed above. When your business grows, you may also want to hire new brokers or advisors. You can train your new employees and ensure they are licensed during onboarding. Plus, you can continue adding new investment options, API, etc. Your business may start by offering stock and bond services only to add crypto, forex, options, futures, etc.
Which Stock Market API is Best for Your Platform?
You can be a hero to your readers or customers by offering the data they need for complete market research.
Every investor or trader has his or her own personalized strategy. If your users like to day trade fast, based on news, an API like the Benzinga U.S. newsfeed may be the ticket.
On the other hand, if your users prefer a deep dive into fundamental data before investing for the long term, you may need to explore corporate actions and fundamentals.
Investors who build a globally allocated portfolio benefit from international market news.
Luckily for today’s traders and investors, platforms like Benzinga and others give you access to information relevant to your interests and strategies.
Frequently Asked Questions
Questions & Answers
You can find live stock market data on various APIs offering newsfeeds with price, trading volume, market updates and much more. Sources such as Benzinga, Bloomberg, Barchart, Alpha Vantage, Refinitiv, Financial Content and many others provide this data.
If you use a popular broker such as TD Ameritrade, Robinhood, TradeStation or InteractiveBrokers, you’ll find Benzinga’s APIs fully integrated, displaying the real-time data in action.