Thomson First Call: An Overview

Thomson ONE Analytics, formerly called Thomson First Call, is an investment research and data service. It is widely used by professionals in the financial services industry and is a source of news and information for many in the financial media. Some of its features are still branded with the First Call name.

The Thomson First Call service was originally offered by Thomson Financial. It was renamed Thomson ONE Analytics in 2003 and now is offered under the company name Refinitiv. Refinitiv was jointly owned by Blackstone Group LP and Reuters Thomson until 2019, when the London Stock Exchange Group bought the company. 

Key Takeaways

  • Thomson ONE Analytics, formerly Thomson First Call, is a financial data and news service operated by Refinitiv.
  • The core service is a database of analyst research and corporate filings.
  • Refinitiv, formerly owned by Thomson Reuters and Blackstone Group LP, has been owned by the London Stock Exchange Group since 2019.

How Thomson One Analytics Works

Thomson One Analytics aggregates and distributes analyst research reports, memos, and other information that is useful to institutional investors, money managers, and other financial industry professionals. Roughly 98% of US-based institutional money management firms subscribe to the service.

It collects information from a network of more than 800 investment research firms, along with corporate public filings and other sources of information. More than 34,000 public companies in 130 countries are tracked for the service.

In addition to selling subscriptions directly to customers, Thomson One distributes its data and research through partnerships with financial media companies including Bloomberg, S&P Global Inc. (SPGI), and the Wall Street Journal. Altogether, the service is used as a source by roughly 600 media outlets around the world.

Real-Time Estimates

One of the products offered by Thomson One is First Call Real-Time Estimates, which provides customers with earnings forecast estimates for publicly-traded companies from 775 participating brokerage firms. These figures include median estimates of the analysts' five-year growth rate forecast; analyst-by-analyst and consensus buy/hold/sell recommendations; quarterly, fiscal-year and calendar-year analyst-by-analyst and consensus estimates, and actual reported earnings.

First Call Notes

Thomson One's seminal service is First Call Notes, which delivers analyst morning meeting notes, intraday research broadcasts, and commentary from global sell-side institutions within minutes of the information's release.

Hundreds of analysts, including those from all of Institutional Investor's top 20-ranked brokerage firms, contribute an average of 3,000 notes per day to the service. During earnings reporting periods, the daily volume swells to 6,000 notes.

How Thomson One Is Used

Customers use the data for market research, communicating investment performance with clients, and preparing financial models.

For financial journalists, the data can quickly provide an at-a-glance view of sentiment changes and emerging trends among the world’s major investment firms. Although the service is primarily used by institutional investors and journalists, individual investors indirectly access its information through the coverage provided by financial journalists.

About Refinitiv

Thomson was a Canadian newspaper group established in the 1930s. Reuters was one of the world's first wire services, having been founded in the 1850s in London by Paul Julius Reuter, a German immigrant. In 2008, the Thomson Corporation merged with Reuters.

The newly-merged company combined two complementary products, Thomson First Call and the Institutional Brokers' Estimate System (usually abbreviated as I/B/E/S). The latter is a database of analyst estimates and company guidance for public companies.

Refinitiv was created in 2018 as a joint venture of the private equity firm Blackstone Group LP and Thomson Reuters. In 2019, the London Stock Exchange Group purchased Refinitiv in a deal purported to be worth $27 billion.