Bloomberg vs. Reuters: An Overview

The onset of the digital revolution cultivated new ways to access information, leading to cutting edge information platforms in Bloomberg and Reuters. In the modern day, both Bloomberg L.P. and Reuters have become associated with the fastest and most credible digital information sources in the financial industry while growing together to carve out a unique sourcing niche.

These two companies rival the traditional news outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and The Financial Times. Their services have evolved to offer users much more than just the news headlines. Core users of these two companies look to their offerings to find the most up-to-the-minute information available on trading metrics throughout the trading day.

As such, both companies are known for their robust multimedia platforms, with key differentiators in their Bloomberg Terminal versus Thomson Reuters Eikon offerings. Overall, professionals look to these unique source offerings in the finance industry because the financial sourcing they provide can mean the difference between millions of dollars in profits.

Key Takeaways

  • Bloomberg and Reuters operate in a unique digital sourcing niche.
  • These two platforms rival the traditional news outlets through their extension of in-depth, real-time market data.
  • Bloomberg and Reuters are primarily suited to institutional professionals.
  • Competition for the Bloomberg Terminal versus the Thomson Eikon is fierce as each develops new features tailored for institutional professionals.
  • Depending on individual needs and budgets, FactSet, S&P Capital IQ, Morningstar, and YCharts are viable alternatives to Bloomberg Terminal and Thomson Eikon subscriptions.

Bloomberg LP

Michael Bloomberg established Bloomberg in 1981. Before his political career, Michael Bloomberg was a well-known name on Wall Street. After being laid off from the investment bank he had worked at for 20 years, Bloomberg launched his business information platform. Bloomberg LP provided quick, high-quality business information to Wall Street. In the early 80s, the company sold its first financial information system to Merrill Lynch, now a part of Bank of America (BAC).

Today, Bloomberg LP is not only known for Bloomberg Terminal, but it has become a global multimedia entity as well. The financial news and media company includes Bloomberg News, weekly magazine Bloomberg Businessweek, as well as radio and television broadcasts. Even with a vast array of products and services, the Bloomberg Terminal continues to be Bloomberg LP’s core revenue-generating product.

Bloomberg Terminal

The Bloomberg Terminal is an integral piece of software within the finance industry that is used to access financial information. In its initial phases, the platform was a physical terminal. However, over the years, the terminal has transformed into a remote software system that is accessible anywhere.

Many companies rely on the terminal to analyze individual securities, market movements, and monitor news. An extension, Bloomberg Tradebook, allows formal trade execution through its messaging service. Traders, portfolio managers, and risk management analysts, among other financial professionals, rely on the program for daily market analysis and trading decisions. Currently, there are over 325,000 subscriptions worldwide.

Thomson Reuters

Created from the Thomson Corporation's 2008 acquisition of Reuters, Thomson Reuters is a multinational media and financial information resource. Thomson Reuters prides itself on delivering leading intel on various sectors, from finance, tax, and accounting to legal and intellectual property.

In 2011, Thomson Reuters moved beyond the realm of financial news with the release of a more affordable option to the Bloomberg Terminal: Thomson Reuters Eikon. Like Bloomberg Terminal, Eikon is a software system used to monitor and analyze financial information. Eikon provides financial professionals with access to market data, analytics, and messaging tools. Information can also be exported to Microsoft Excel for continued data analysis.

Furthermore, Eikon can use all tweets on a given subject to identify positive or negative indicators. Unstructured data from social media sources have been vital in identifying trends over the past decade, but few platforms, other than Eikon, have been able to collect and analyze this data.

Key Differences—Comparing Market Metrics

Eikon and Bloomberg Terminal are the two most used business information platforms in the world. According to an article on "," as of 2017, Bloomberg had a 33.2% market share in the financial data provider industry while Reuters owned 22.5%. Financial education provider "" states that Bloomberg has 325,301 users while Eikon has approximately 190,000 users. The remaining market share is primarily comprised of FactSet, S&P Capital IQ, and Morningstar Direct.

Bloomberg Terminal has 325,301 users while Eikon has approximately 190,000.

For individuals who work at large financial institutions, the cost of either program is probably negligible. However, for higher education institutions, government agencies, and small businesses the costs are staggering. Bloomberg Terminal is the most expensive among financial data providers, at $24,000 per year. For customers with two or more subscriptions, Bloomberg charges $20,000 per year. By comparison, a fully loaded version of Eikon costs $22,000, and a discounted version costs $3,600.

While Bloomberg Terminal and Thomson Reuters Eikon are far and away the two most popular platforms in this space, there are several less expensive substitutes. FactSet, S&P Capital IQ, Morningstar Inc., and YCharts are all viable alternatives. The choice depends on one’s needs and budget. 

After Bloomberg and Eikon, FactSet and Capital IQ are the next two most popular financial data platforms for professionals. For smaller more personal use, YCharts offers a lite and professional version. These subscriptions are geared toward individual investors and the Ychart professional service is better suited for small businesses. Morningstar offers both free and paid content for individual investors and businesses. Lastly, when in doubt, Google and Yahoo Finance provide financial information for free.