Are you an investor? If so, you know how hard it can be to find a decent research tool. Even paid tools seem to have some sort of bias towards one option or another. So, we’ve been on the hunt for a tool that gives you the honest ability to research without some sort of commission based agenda behind the tool. Today, we’re going to look at 5iResearch to see if they fit the bill!
What Is 5iResearch?
5iResearch is a sister company of Canadian MoneySaver that is designed for normal people like you and I to get access to honest investment advice. The big key with 5iResearch is that users are the only people that pay them. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about commission based decisions that may be good for them, but not you. They provide a wide range of educational articles as well as question and answer forums and other tools.
How Reliable Is The Information Provided?
Let’s face it; no one has a crystal ball that allows them to look into the future. However, by following trends, you can get pretty close. So, I went digging through the question and answer section to see exactly how accurate the answers were. I’ve got to say, I was pretty surprised. I don’t think I could have answered the questions better myself!
What Kind Of Questions Can You Ask?
This is one of my favorite parts of the service. There doesn’t seem to be an investment based question that you can’t get answered. Reading through the questions, I saw things like “How would you rate this investment?” as well as “I don’t have this type of investment in my portfolio, should I add it? If so, what percentage of my portfolio should it encompass?” However, out of all the questions I read, this one really caught my eye…
“I am in the final throws of my decision to buy some Stella Jones stock. I understand from your report that they essentially profit from constructing some of the hard assets for rail roads (among other pressure treated wood products for tel-cos, utilities, etc.).
Focusing in on the rail part a bit, does this mean that they should see increased business for replacement ties, etc. as rail is used more and more heavily for shipping oil? It seems like this could act like a bit of a hedge to exposure to oil pipelines.
It seems like a good business (not sexy) and required business. I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post and on what makes this thing grow.
5i Research Answer:
You have got the general idea of the company, utility poles and railway ties make up the large majority of revenues. We think increased traffic from oil by rail would have a slight positive impact but we would not base the investment around that thesis. It won’t hurt business but is unlikely to create a significant increase in demand. We think the real growth for Stella Jones will will come from dividend growth and acquistions in a fragmented industry. The more scale and reach the company builds, the better and more reliable of a supplier they become to large railroad companies.
Why did that catch my eye? Well, when you look at investment research, everything seems to be based on numbers, history, etc… However, in this question, it was more about anticipating the need for a specific asset in the future. As you get further and further into investing, it starts to become clear that looking into future demand of assets is incredibly important. I looked into the advice given and did quite a bit of research myself. It was on point! Oh, and yes, that means you may want to look into Stella Jones!
Who Can Read Your Questions?
When it comes to forums like this, most of them are pretty public. You may have to log in, but everyone that’s logged in can see the question and answer. With 5iResearch, that’s not the case. You can choose to ask a public question and get a public answer or you can choose to hide your questions from everyone and have your answer or answers emailed to you. I love the privacy they provide with this tool.
What Other Tools Do They Provide?
OK, so I’ve gone over the Q & A portion of their service quite a bit, and for good reason. It’s the main piece of their service. However, they do offer other important tools. For instance they offer in depth research reports on some of the hottest investment options, FAQ, and model portfolios.
What about Cost?
Unfortunately, you’re not going to come across a non-biased investment research tool for free. The good news is, this one really doesn’t cost much at all. As a matter of fact, they charge a flat fee of $119.95 per year which breaks out to a little less than $10 per month!
Overall, I’m incredibly impressed with the 5iResearch product. I’ve been through a few of their reports and the information is incredibly accurate. However, I’ve got to say, I’m most impressed with their question and answer tool. It’s amazing how much of a broad range of questions you can ask and get reliable answers to. For just under $10 a month, you can’t go wrong!