From Hedge Fund Insight staff
A new set of real-time economic indicators using satellite imagery and big data to show environmental change is now available from Alternative data specialist QuantCube Technology. The indicators are aimed at hedge funds, asset management firms, pension funds, investment banks and corporate treasurers and relate to four phenomena:
- Urban growth index – measuring development in cities and urban areas over time;
- NO2 pollution index – tracking human activity by comparing average nitrogen dioxide produced across different regions;
- Water stress index – monitoring water surface fluctuations to pinpoint the likely occurrence of drought and water shortages;
- Agricultural index – observing agricultural land usage to help predict changes in agricultural yields.
“Over the last two years we have been working closely with the European Space Agency (ESA) on a Demonstration Project, applying artificial intelligence and deep learning techniques to their Earth observation data to create a ground-breaking new set of economic indicators,” explained Thanh-Long Huynh, CEO of QuantCube. “Combining the satellite data from ESA with additional QuantCube data sources – including news and social media data, industry and employment data, international trade and shipping data, meteorological and oceanographic data, and more – allows us to provide a new set of indicators for measuring economic changes in granular detail across key sectors of the economy.”
The new set of QuantCube Global Satellite indicators are available through QuantCube’s Macroeconomic Intelligence Platform, which also provides real-time indicators for inflation, tourism, global trade, and key macro-economic variables. QuantCube worked closely with a number of financial institutions to ensure that its new Global Satellite indicators would meet their needs.
The objective was to create a set of economic indicators, using satellite imagery and big data not otherwise exploited, to provide a new source of real-time economic intelligence. The indicators fill a gap in the market for asset management firms, hedge funds, pension funds, investment banks and corporate treasurers that are hungry for economic insights. Longer term, there is also the potential for the indicators to provide insight into measuring environmental sustainability.
“ESA has guided the QuantCube team through ESA’s Business Applications programme in a Demonstration Project over the last two years and helped to co-fund the firm’s service development into the best way of incorporating Earth observation data, for instance from the Copernicus programme’s Sentinel satellites, within its real-time economic indicators,” explained Volker Schumacher, Applications Engineer at ESA. “We’re very happy that QuantCube is now launching these four new Global Satellite indicators to market and that financial institutions and other organisations will be able to benefit from this new real-time economic intelligence.”
About QuantCube Technology
QuantCube Technology uses artificial intelligence and big data analytics to deliver real-time macro-economic insights. The firm operates one of the largest alternative data lakes in the world, processing more than 14 billion data end points. Sources encompass news, social media, satellite data, professional networks and consumer reviews, as well as international trade, shipping, real-estate, hospitality and telecoms data.
QuantCube’s macro nowcast indices, on variables including economic growth, inflation, employment and international trade, correlate highly with official data and significantly beat the consensus. Financial institutions using QuantCube data benefit from real-time insight, often ahead of official numbers, which they can use to inform their investment strategies.
Headquartered in Paris, QuantCube employs a diverse international team of data scientists with expertise in multilingual NLP, deep learning and machine learning techniques. The company’s shareholders include Moody’s and Caisse des Dépôts and its R&D in computer vision has been partially funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) and French government space agency CNES.
Learn more at: www.quant-cube.com