There are two ways to begin using Bloomberg. The first is to subscribe to the Bloomberg service. You can do so by contacting them (general contact number is (212) 318-2000). The representative you speak with can then take down details of what you are looking for and have someone from the sales team contact you. Pricing and terms of the contract are unique to each user and would be discussed when the sales team contacts you. However, be aware that Bloomberg is an expensive system and that having your own terminal may not be practical for all users. Should you decide to subscribe to your own service, Bloomberg can help you install the software over the phone, or can come out to visit you and assist in installation. Note: the software can be installed on most PCs, but the company will give you a special keyboard for navigating the system. (For related reading see: The Bloomberg Terminal At A Glance.)
The second method of accessing Bloomberg is to find a public facility that has a Bloomberg terminal. Many larger libraries and universities have one, so that is a good place to start looking. The downside of this approach is that you won't be able to customize the system and will have to share it with other users. However, for many users these drawbacks may be outweighed by the cost savings over subscribing to the system as an individual.
Once you have accessed the system, the next trick is to figure out how to navigate. A good starting place would be either to schedule a visit from a Bloomberg customer service representative or to call customer service for some help. Bloomberg is usually quite good at providing technical support and assistance, and a representative should be able to give you a good start on using the terminal.
The screenshot above shows the Bloomberg log-in page. Each user has a user name and password that will allow them to access the system, although at public facilities you might share this with other users. Once you have logged in, you're ready to begin using the Bloomberg system.
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