As I’ve said before, I look at an awful lot of stock charts. When I run across a ticker symbol on a web page that I’d like to view the stock chart of, I used to have to copy the symbol to the clipboard and then go to stockcharts.com and paste it in their form. This gets tiresome when you’re viewing more than just a couple stock charts.
A Better Way
I started using Firefox’s bookmark keyword feature to create a quick way to go to a stock chart for the ticker I wanted. For example, to go to the stock chart for Microsoft (MSFT), I type in the following in my address bar:
The “c” is my keyword shortcut for the following url:
Firefox automatically replaces the %s with “msft” after I hit enter. This cuts my time down quite a bit, but still requires too much input on my part. I needed something faster.
The Best Way
Taking matters into my own hands, I came up with a Greasemonkey user script that turns any ticker symbol into a link to its stock chart on stockcharts.com. All words that are between 2 and 5 upper case characters are treated as a ticker symbol and get the “linkification” treatment.
For example, when my Firefox web browser comes across the string “MSFT” on a web page, it automatically becomes:
Pretty neat, right?
After initially creating the script, I quickly found out just how many non-ticker symbol acronyms there are on the web. You’d be surprised at how many there are. It didn’t take long to realize that I needed to exclude a bunch of words that I came across several times a day (e.g. HTML, RSS, CSS, etc). Inside the user script there is an exclude list that, unfortunately, is not configurable, but should do the trick for a lot of what you see. If you find any very common strings out there that you think should be excluded, please leave a comment here and I’ll consider adding them to the exclusion list.
To install the user script, you’ll need to first install Greasemonkey (which, of course, requires the Firefox Web Browser. After you’ve installed Greasemonkey, click on the link below and go to Install User Script… from the Tools menu in Firefox. Then just visit any site that has ticker symbols. I’d recommend Poorman’s Investments, MaoXian, Tradermike.net, and The Kirk Report – all excellent sources of information.