The Australian Centre for Financial Studies (ACFS), together with its research partner, ANZ Trustees Limited (ANZT), today announced the development of a unique digital Australian Equities Database (AED) covering data from 1948 to current date

Professor Deborah Ralston, Director of the Centre stated that research into Australian equities has been hindered by a limited historic digital record. ANZT and ACFS have noted these limitations and have joined in seeking to remedy the deficiency. The AED aims to extend the historic record of Australian equities back in time to the early 1900s so that the database will provide a broader and deeper set of equity fundamental and market aggregate information over a greater range of time than is presently available. ANZT and ACFS have been supported in the project by RMIT University providing research support and Sirca providing a web platform for the database. The project is a three year staged program of development and is now passing its midway point a sufficient point to start sharing the benefits of the database more widely.

The database expands the publicly available digital equities data by over 150% and will further double in size by the completion of the program in the next 12 months. The AED presently provides monthly data on almost 6,000 companies across the present 63 years of records collected. The AED details major trading and fundamental data items including recorded earnings and dividend information, number of shares on issue, share turnover, equity nominal value, net tangible assets per share and price range data. The database captures all capital change information and has been used to generate return and risk estimates at equity, portfolio and market level, together with all feasible ratios and performance indices. The AED has been extensively tested for accuracy, consistency and comparability so that it is now ready for user testing and application.

The AED is a unique financial analysis strategy tool. Constructed from publicly available monthly stock exchange journal reports of the Melbourne Stock Exchange and, post-1972, the Australian Stock Exchange, the database enables longer term evaluation of investment and portfolio formation strategies relating equities to both historic and current trading and economic environment. The AED is seen as potentially of value to a wide range of interested parties, such as the financial services industry; academia; media; private wealth and investment individuals; economists / market analysts. Prof Deborah Ralston said.

Professor Ralston added that ACFS has concentrated on development of the database with only limited research analysis undertaken. However, even the analysis to date has found numerous market insights and suggested a number of significant equity performance indicators. Some very high returns have been achieved in preliminary simulation tests.

The database will initially be available through consultation with ACFS. It is planned that increased direct access to the database will be made available at completion of full development of the program.

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About the Australian Centre for Financial Studies
The Australian Centre for Financial Studies facilitates industry-relevant and rigorous research and consulting, thought leadership and independent commentary. Drawing on expertise from academia, industry and government, the Centre promotes excellence in financial services.

The Centre specialises in leading edge finance and investment research, aiming to boost the global credentials of Australia’s finance industry; bridging the gap between research and industry and supporting Australia and Melbourne as an international centre for finance practice, research and education.

About ANZ Trustees
ANZ Trustees is a leading trustee company with expertise in philanthropy, wealth management and wealth transfer. Our expertise assists individuals, families, companies and charities to preserve and grow their wealth into the future. ANZ Trustees’ services include wills and estate planning, managing family and charitable trusts and foundations and investment and personal financial management.

Media contact details:

Deborah Ralston

Prof Deborah Ralston
Australian Centre for Financial Studies
T: +61 3 9666 1050