2011Fall7646 Homework 6

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This assignment will give you experience in reading financial news articles and classifying them as a positive, negative or neutral event.

To Do

  • A list of articles we will review is available online via T-square. Both CSV and PDF are available. You should open that file and find your GT email address. Each filename with your name next to it is assigned to you. The link to the pdf file is here.
    • The root directory of all news articles is at: /hzr71/research/QSDataCurrent/Raw/Newscred Please reference paths in this spreadsheet from this directory.
    • Your job will be to look read each article and fill in on survey monkey, for each article:
      • Focus on the information in the first description tag
      • Date of the article
      • Assess whether the article is good, bad or neutral
      • Provide the symbol of the stock for which the article applies

Classification Help

  • Positive events represent good news for the company and negative events are the opposite.
  • In these articles, an analyst will declare the nature of a particular company to be positive or negative. When classifying articles, keep in mind that the directional change in rating is what dictates the event type, not necessarily the absolute rating. For example, going from "strong buy" to just "buy" is a negative event even though the analyst has stated you should buy the stock.
  • Note that there may be multiple stock symbols in the article. You should select the symbol that is referenced in the upgrade or downgrade. Do not select the symbol of the analyst or some other corporation.
  • Many articles can not be classified. Just list them as a non event or a 0. Positive events are a 1, negative events are a -1.

Dos and Don'ts

  • Don't follow links and read the article. Just read the text in the file.
  • Do focus on the information between the first pair of <description> tags.
  • What if no stock is mentioned?
    • Still assess the article as +, - or 0.
    • Set the symbol as ----
  • What if there are multiple stocks?
    • Choose one of them to label the article.
  • I can't find the date?
    • Look for the <published_at> tag


  • Complete the surveymonkey survey spreadsheet for 20 articles.
  • Submit your answers here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/YB8RTJT
    • Your grade will be based on a random selection of news articles classified on the spreadsheet.