A New Way to Find ASX Index Components

by Oct 30, 2020All Articles, Technical Analysis, Education

If you are subscribed to our Australian end-of-day data then you should have seen an email from us regarding an important change to the way we deliver the lists of the stocks in the ASX market cap ‘size’ indices, such as the ASX Top 50, Top 200. (If you don’t use the ASX data please keep reading as there is some useful information below that you may not be aware of.)

From Monday November 9th 2020 the S&P folder will be removed from ASX Shares.

These folders were legacy items from over a decade ago. They are terribly outdated and when you do use them, there is no way for your watchlists etc to update as the membership changes.

If you don’t use them then there’s nothing you need to do, but if you do – or would like to start to – then you can now access them through Optuma Symbol Lists.

What are Optuma Symbol Lists?

To learn more about Optuma Symbol Lists click here, but basically it’s a data selection that allows you to quickly and easily see the stocks that make up many of the global indices (eg S&P500, FTSE 100, NSE Nifty 50, and now the ASX200). The lists will only show if you have selected the equivalent data in your subscription. Eg. if you have access to our US equity data, you will get symbol lists for 6 of the Russell indices, plus the S&P500 sector indices, and even a few ETFs (eg the iShares Semiconductor SOXX).

Going back to Australian data, not only do we have the components of the major indices (eg ASX 200 and ASX All Ords), we also have a list for the Size Indices (eg XFL for the S&P/ASX 50 index, and XSO for the Small Ords), and Sector Indices (eg XEJ for Energy, and XFJ for Financials) making it easy for them to be scanned or to be opened as a Relative Comparison Chart, or an RRG:

Optuma Symbol Lists are Dynamic

One of the main benefits is that whereas the lists in the S&P folders were static (meaning you had to manually add and remove stocks from a Watchlist), the Optuma Symbol Lists dynamically update when the members change.

So if your watchlist or scan is linked to the current ASX 300 symbol list, when the S&P do their quarterly rebalancing we will update the list which will be reflected in any of your workbooks which are linked to the lists.

Survivorship Bias-Free data

Another major benefit of using the new lists is that they contain the historical members of the indices back to September 2012 (if you can help us find membership data before that please let us know!). This is important when testing, because the indices only contain the winners, and you may be testing on a stock in 2015 that wasn’t in the index back then – and ignoring those that have since been removed.

For more on survivorship bias and using the IsMember scripting function see Mathew Verdouw’s post here.

How do I add Optuma Symbol Lists to my account?

To add Optuma Symbol Lists – whether to add the new ASX lists or the lists for other exchanges – log in to your account page and go to the Product section, as per the video:

Note: If you’re a Lifetime Services client you do not need to do this process, as you have access to all available data exchanges without additional charge. As such, we’ve enabled Optuma Symbol Lists for you automatically.

FAQs for the new ASX Lists

Click here for a list of common questions regarding the changes to the ASX data.

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Darren Hawkins, MSTA

Darren Hawkins, MSTA

Senior Software Specialist at Optuma

Darren is the senior Software Specialist at Optuma. He joined the company in 2009 after attending an introductory technical analysis course. Darren now instructs users all over the world, from experienced Wall Street traders and professional money managers to individual traders drawing their first trendlines.

Darren grew up in the UK and attended college in the USA where he earned a BA in Economics from St Mary's College of Maryland. He went on to spend a few years working at the Nasdaq Stock Market in Washington DC. Going on to live and work in Australia, the US and currently the UK, Darren has a broad understanding of the individual needs of traders, portfolio managers and investors utilising a wide range of methodologies.

In 2014 Darren passed the UK-based Society of Technical Analysts diploma course, and when not looking at charts he keeps a keen eye on England's cricket team - especially if they are playing against Australia. He lives in the Essex countryside in England, with wife Wendy and their labrador, Gabba.


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