updated 07:55 pm EST, Fri December 28, 2007
First Look at Stox
Stock trading is becoming increasingly popular as a way for individuals to make money for large expenditures, while some individual investors even make a living from the practice either professionally or privately. As Mac systems become more popular, the need for Apple's platform to fit in with all aspects spurred ProSoft Engineering to unveil a new stock monitoring application called Stox. The software, which is published under its consumer brand, JoeSoft, is designed to allow users to track stock portfolios as well as trading transactions. Stox also supplies users with pertinent information about the past, present, and potential future of chosen investments. [corrected, updated]
When you start Stox for the first time, a portfolio wizard pops up and prompts you for information. Here you can title the portfolio and add stocks from over 60 international trading markets. A small magnifying glass button brings up Yahoo's finance website to help users search for a particular ticker tag, and the application supports adding another portfolio using the wizard at a later date that is accessible through the Portfolio menu.
Stox' portfolio wizard
Once the wizard completes its tasks, Stox brings up investment information based on portfolio selections. Information displayed -- such as gains from open or close, highs and lows, bids, changes, and more -- is customizable through the View menu.
The bottom half of the portfolio section displays stock-specific information -- such as a Chart & News tab with an overview chart for the stock's history with relevant news information on the side. A Technical Chart allows users to check information like historical volatility, volume, alarms, and more. The Quote section provides a comprehensive look at price ranges, open as well as close data, and market caps while the Options tab shows various Puts and Calls information.
Stox features a Trades tab with buy and sell information for the currently selected stock, while a Notes section provides a free-form note-taking tool to keep track of any information not provided by the software. The Settings tab allows users to change what currency stocks are displayed in, alarm levels, country-specific quote information, labels, and more.
Stox provides a general overview for portfolios by clicking the Overview button on the top bar, displaying both short term and long term financial data as well as market indices and portfolio-related news. A Transactions button displays all portfolio- and stock-specific transactions related to both the entire portfolio and each individual company, tracking various actions -- like buy, sell, interest, deposits, tax, withdrawals, dividends, splits, and so on.
JoeSoft appears to have a solid application with Stox, as it seems to be very flexible and powerful. Users can add or take away news sources according to preference, and can monitor stocks in very minute detail. Stox also generates reports on portfolio performance that are printable, and the application's user interface appears sleek and trim.