Most people would agree that 2022 was a turbulent year for investors. To curtail widespread inflation, the Fed repeatedly hiked rates, hammering the price of stocks — especially high-valued tech shares — and bonds. The S&P 500 finished nearly 20% down — its worst year since the 2008 financial crisis. The global stock market lost over $30 trillion.
However, before getting too discouraged about stock investing, put things in perspective. The S&P 500 was up 16% and 27%, respectively, in 2020 and 2021. In fact, stocks have been up by about 19% since 2019 end. And investing in stocks remains one of the best ways to build lasting wealth. Whether you’re an experienced investor or just getting started, a stock watchlist website can be beneficial.
A stock watchlist is a collection of monitored securities that can help you make an informed and timed investment decision. An excellent stock watchlist website offers robust screeners that can sift through thousands of listed companies on U.S. and global exchanges, enabling you to create a watchlist based on your investment style, goal and strategies. Benzinga reviews some of the best stock watchlist websites and how these platforms help you find profitable securities.
The Best Stock Watchlist Websites
A stock watchlist aims to break down market conditions into actionable pieces, enabling you to move early or react when the market changes. By creating and monitoring a manageable list of securities, you can more easily track companies and stay on top of current or relevant financial news. A list of some of the best stock watchlist websites follows.
Best Overall for Real-time Market News: Benzinga Pro
Benzinga Pro is the best platform for live or real-time stock market news and is ideal for investors who rely on the news to create a watchlist and trade the stock market. These users may include active and pattern day traders. The highly configurable platform can seamlessly run on multiple windows and monitors. Benzinga Pro strikes a perfect balance between robustness and excellent ease of usage — a daunting task for most of its peers.
The company’s proprietary website contains extensive free news and thought-provoking, highly insightful original articles tailored for traders and investors. However, if you frequently trade with the news, say a short-term options trade at quarterly earnings announcements, you’ll want to subscribe to Benzinga Pro. The free version contains just enough features for casual investors, including charts, key market movers and a watchlist.
However, established investors will need the Premium plan, which ranges from $27 per month for the Basic plan to $347 per month for Option Mentorship. Its suite of advanced features more than compensates for the pricing. Benefits include screeners, real-time scanners, advanced newsfeeds (filter by pricing, float, and volume), signals, watchlist alert and sentiment indicators. You can leverage movers and screeners to create a watchlist. The mover is ideal if your watchlist is based on the biggest losers and gainers. It filters for sessions, periods, sectors, market cap and prices.
The screener has over 50 filters, including margin, float and volume. It is ideal if you want more filters when creating your watchlist. Benzinga’s watchlist updates in real-time, with the current price and volume. You can set up a sound or email alert to know when stocks in your watchlist hit the newsfeed. You can also filter tools, including newsfeed, calendar and signals to get a dedicated feed of only news and alert about the specific tickers in your watchlist.
Best for Long-Term Investors: Stock Rover
Stock Rover is a robust stock research platform offering valuable tools, metrics and trade or investment insight that satisfies the needs of diverse investors. While pattern day traders may find its limited technical indicator filters unappealing, investors will appreciate its fundamental offerings. For instance, the platform maintains a 10-year historical financial database on all North American stocks and ETFs.
This database facilitates the implementation of granular stock screening strategies. Over 600 data points and rating systems covering every financial concept you might have are available for scanning and filtering. The watchlist has fundamentals broken into profitability, analyst estimates, valuations, dividend, margin, overall score and stock rover ratings. If you want, you can set the watchlist and filters to refresh every minute.
Stock Rover enhances the visualization of essential financial data in an easy-to-read format. The research report encompasses tables, charts, colors and other features and is exportable as PDF files for future reference. You can connect your brokerage account directly with Stock Rover for more efficient portfolio tracking, reporting, rebalancing and management. Its exceptional scanner encompasses Warren Buffett and Ben Graham’s favorite criteria, including the margin of safety, DCF, fair value and much more. If you’re a long-term investor, Stock Rover could bew the ideal stock watchlist website for you.
The freemium is fine if you’re a casual trader or investor. But the premium plans offer more robust features, including additional charting and screening metrics and multiple-monitor supports. Pricing ranges from $7.99 per month or $79.99 per year for the Essential plan to $27.99 per month or $279.99 per year for the Premium Plus plan. You can save more by paying upfront.
Best for Freemium: Zacks
Zacks is an independent research platform renowned for its detailed and carefully crafted stock and fund picks that often beat conventional wisdom. The website offers extensive archives of personal finance and investment articles, video commentaries and podcasts.
Becoming a free Profit from the Pros member grants you access to more content and tools to create a practical stock watchlist. These include a portfolio tracker, a customizable stock screener with over 100 metrics and a bull stock of the day. However, if you crave more powerful tools to research and create your watchlist, you’d better go for the premium at $249 per year.
Here are some extra features you can get from the premium:
- Zacks #1 list: A collection of top picks that have outperformed the S&P 500 since 1988.
- Zacks premium screener: Contains about 45 predefined screens strategically created to outperform the market.
- Style score: Ranks all stocks on Zacks #1 list based on value, momentum and growth.
- Focus list: A 50-stock portfolio containing equities with long-term earning potential, which is ideal for long-term or buy-and-hold investors.
- Price predictions: The earning expected price prediction (ESP) filters can help you identify equities with a significant chance of upside-earning surprises in a trading season.
- Research: Comprehensive equity research report for over 1,000 widely followed stocks.
You can try out these powerful premium tools with a free 30-day membership before you start getting charged. To get started with Zacks, type a stock ticker symbol of your choice in the upper right corner and view the research data at a glance. You can then dig deeper into research on the left which is fantastic for fundamental analysis. Another cool thing about Zacks is that it currently integrates with TradingView charts for technical analysis, which is vital for day trading.
Best for Customizability and Pricing: TC2000
TC2000 is one of the leading websites for North American investors (U.S. and Canada). It is customizable and scalable, fronting a rich array of features. TC2000 efficiently combines real-time or live fundamental screening with technical screens integrated into live watchlists connected to its advanced chart. It is also highly intuitive and navigable; with a few clicks, you can set up your custom fundamentals indicator, which will appear on the chart. TC2000 offers various technical features, including the relative strength index (RSI), on-balance volume (OBV) and Bollinger bands.
The entry-level Silver plan at $9.99 per month offers basic features, including a customizable layout of charts and watchlists, among others. However, the Gold and Platinum grant you access to the cool stuff at $29.99 and $89.98 per month, respectively. For instance, besides the sortable watchlist, which can set up over 100 alerts via simultaneous tracking, the Gold also features EasyScan® stock and option screener, a simplified step-by-step guide to creating conditions and chart drawing tools.
The Platinum plan features historical conditional testing and scan results, as well as automatic refresh intervals on sorts and scans — essential features for creating a watchlist. A discount brokerage service is offered via its brokerage platform at $4.95 per equity trade. Although costly, this facilitates robust but seamless integration for trading stocks with charts and possibly the best implementation of stock options trading.
Overall, TC2000 delivers robust scanning, screening and filtering across platforms without compromising simplicity. This feature makes managing your stock watchlist easier. Such simplified maneuverability also facilitates exchange-traded fund (ETF) and options screening. However, the website is limited to the U.S. and Canadian exchange.
Best for Technical Analysis and Charting: TradingView
TradingView is an excellent stock watchlist platform for experienced and beginner investors. If your emphasis is on charting and technical analysis, TradingView is the way to go. This is especially so for active and pattern day traders. Nevertheless, buy-and-hold investors can also find its limited historical data beneficial.
Salient features include advanced and customizable charting capabilities built on HTML5, a robust stock screener based on comprehensive fundamental, economic and financial metrics; agile technical analysis with over 100 pre-built and 150+ community indicators; and an unmissable alert system that alerts for 12 conditions including changing prices, indicators and strategies. You can seamlessly customize filters and views to your preference. Furthermore, you can map and compare fundamental data and past performances.
All these features facilitate the seamless creation and monitoring of the watchlist. However, part of what makes TradingView outstanding is its global coverage. Unlike TC2000, which is limited to the U.S. and Canadian exchanges, TradingView covers over 130 indicators in real-time worldwide and includes 40+ cryptocurrency exchanges, which is perhaps why it boasts 30 million monthly users. Its highly interactive chat room also facilitates real-time interactions between diverse traders worldwide.
Being part of an extensive social network of traders and investors can facilitate sharing of ideas and spark learning among newbies and experts. It can also make for a great sense of community. While the freemium offers basic features like screeners for stocks and ETFs, watchlist alerts and advanced customization filtering, the premium plan contains all the features expert traders need to make more informed decisions. Pricing ranges from $14.95 for the Pro plan to $59.95 monthly for the Premium plan. Each package comes with a 30-day free trial.
Why Build a Stock Watchlist?
Experienced and successful investors or traders use a stock watchlist for various reasons.
Simplifying trading: A watchlist can help streamline your trading experience and improve the efficiency of your trade by eliminating the time that would have been wasted tracking all securities.
Identifying opportunities: Unexpected news or trends can trigger price swings in the stock markets, so you must be prepared to make an informed decision quickly when the time comes. A stock watchlist enables you to identify trading opportunities and make decisions quickly.
Ease-of-use: A stock watchlist helps investors seamlessly scan and screen the entire market and create a manageable list. It is highly efficient and makes for greater ease of use.
Minimize investment-related noise: Creating a watchlist can help you see what is relevant and what isn’t by eliminating as much investment-related noise as possible.
Access to actionable information: A stock watchlist can offer you actionable and up-to-date information from an expert-level source — a prerequisite for creating a bespoke and diversified stock portfolio.
How to Build a Stock Watchlist
Creating a stock watchlist is relatively easy and involves the following short steps.
Define What Type of Trader or Investor You’re
Are you a scalper, swing trader, algorithmic trader or buy-and-hold investor? Each of these trading or investment approaches requires different types of watchlists. For instance, while a technical arrangement will work well for a swing trader, the fundamental type will be ideal for buy-and-hold investors. In addition, while some traders trade small caps, others trade tech and even low floats, so you must also understand what you trade, your strategy, your setup and what helps you win.
Select a Suitable Stock Watchlist Website
Next, you need to select a platform offering a robust mix of tools (screeners, scanners, advanced charting and technical and fundamental analytic tools) that suits your needs. You can then plug those definitive characteristics into the screener or scanner in your chosen platform to get your initial list and then fine-tune it using other metrics.
Refine and Analyze Your Watchlist
Depending on what your scanner filters for, your initial list will either be short or long. A short list of between 10 to 20 is perfect. If your initial list is long, you need to filter for additional metrics based on your strategy and styles. These metrics may include fundamentals and technical types. It also makes sense to review the scanner list, news, charts and your strategy to know if it aligns with the watchlist. A long list can be counterproductive.
Proceed to Trade
Once you have analyzed and refined your watchlist to a manageable level and have a good sense of what equities you’re interested in, you can trade.
Considerations With Stock Watchlists
When creating a stock watchlist, here are a few things to put into consideration:
Avoid Longer Watchlists
A long list of over 100 will be counterproductive since monitoring will be relatively challenging. Keep it between 5 to 15. Most brokerages provide a watchlist that can only accommodate a watchlist ranging from 25 to 75.
Create Multiple Watchlists
Additional watchlists can be a great way to further break down the market into actionable pieces, so you should consider that. Having several lists can further simplify what you monitor in the market and your reaction to changes. Your main watchlist will ordinarily contain very short curated stocks that you look forward to investing in soonest. Other lists may be longer and act as a funnel through which you can regularly update the smaller list.
Update Your Main Watchlist
Your main watchlist must only contain stocks you’re close to buying and must be reviewed daily or weekly. To facilitate this, you can establish investing criteria and remove a stock when it no longer meets such criteria.
Avoid Alphabetical Sorting
A stock watchlist is sorted alphabetically or by added date rather than relevant metrics by default. You should sort your list by metrics like volume change to keep the best opportunities at the top.
Frequently Asked Questions
What do traders use to watch stocks?
Traders use a stock watchlist to monitor stocks with the potential for investing or trading.
How do I find stocks to trade every day?
You can find stock to trade on brokerage platforms or investment websites. However, you must understand that not all equities offer reward potential. It would help if you chose the right stocks based on your investment strategy to increase your chances of earning returns.