Is Financial Times subscription worth it?

Good evening,

Just a general question on everyones views, I was wondering if you think subscribing to the Financial Times is worth the cost? I have been thinking of subscribing but it’s always nice to hear peoples views.

Thank you :freetrade:


The FT Weekend is a good read ( but pricey at £4 ) Use this link to get half price vouchers to try it out.


Thank you for the link, if I ever by the printed version of the FT it would be the FT Weekend.

Personally, I think so because it’s indispensable daily reading for me.
However, I would always recommend you trial a service before fully committing to see whether it’s to your liking. 4 weeks is plenty to gauge whether it may become part of your routine:


I’m torn, very pricey for what it is. I prob won’t renew after this year. I find i read a bit of everything online which means I don’t spend enough time on FT to justify the cost. Also, most coffee shops (at least in the city) have a FT…

Economist is very good, and cheaper, although there is so much contact produced every week that I struggle to get through it.

Alternatively The Washington Post is quite popular given its comparative price - owned by Jeff Bezos…

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I normally just google the headline and click through to read. Or are you looking more to have access without needing articles mentioned by another party?


I’ve never really got on with the FT but I’m willing to fully concede it could be inverse class snobbery (I know my place)
I think there’s enough free content around without needing to subscribe to it but The Economist is great for a more in depth view.

And you get the free notebook :woman_shrugging:


I think I shall give that a try! Thank you

I have personally enjoyed every time I have read it and I was thinking of getting full access.

Interesting, never really thought the Economist will be any good… Have not used it often :smiley:


Poll time! :slight_smile:

Do you think Financial Times subcription is worth it?

  • Yes, it’s worth the money.
  • No, It’s not worth the money.
  • I don’t know.

0 voters

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VK is all you need :eyes:

The Financial Times is superb, but of course costs money that could be used for trading. Any financial paper or magazine or tip sheets etc, require careful consideration. The internet has a colossal amount of investing info, its all there if you have the time to search it out .

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I do think that you have made a fair point that the money could be used for investments. Thank you :slight_smile:

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I remember when I started out in the early 2000’s I went and signed up for a level 2 ADVFN subscription to get the best view of the markets (at like £50 a month ie. £600 a year), and I quickly realised I wasn’t even going to make that amount in a year on a sub-£10k portfolio, so cancelled the limo and learned to ride the bus. Since then I try to look at these subs more mathematically to decide if I should go premium.

When working out if it’s worth it, you need to decide whether the benefit you receive is purely the thought of superior investment performance or a mixture of superior investment performance and entertainment?

For me, I’d say strictly business. So If it is a cost that I think will enable me to make greater returns, the cost must be less than the perceived £ difference between having it or not. There are people on here (@DaveTMG perhaps? Not putting words in anyone’s mouth :grin:) who might argue that in the long run the difference between the average person having an FT sub or not is very close to, if not precisely, 0%. Playing devil’s advocate - I’ll be very generous and put a value of +1% a year on it.

Let’s say for example that I have a £10k portfolio, that means I think I’ll make an extra £100 a year on average by having all this fantastic insight on business and global affairs. £100 divided by 52weeks is therefore £1.92 a week I’d rationally be willing to spend if I had a £10k portfolio.

As of Oct 2018, it costs £14.50 a week for the FT’s premium digital subscription with paper delivered as well.
Or £8.60 for premium digital by itself.
Or £5.35 for the standard digital subscription.

Personally, the standard subscription would be as annoying as having the standard subscription of Sky (paying for freeview with channels missing and a massive paywall whenever anything you actually want to watch comes on), so that would be out of the question for me. So it’s either the premium or the premium with paper, which are 4.48x and 7.55x out of my price range in the £10k scenario. So in that case it’s not worth it.

With my optimistic +1% performance value I’m putting on having a subscription, I’d need to have a portfolio of £44.8k to break even on a premium digital sub or a portfolio of £75.5k to break even on the top tier of sub.

Taking off my devil horns, in reality I’d probably tend towards the view that it is only worth about +0.1%, so I’d need a portfolio of £448k or £755k before the subscription cost became worth it for me.

So in summary, for the vast number of people the FT subscriptions are completely overpriced and not worth it from a mathematical point of view, if they’re looking at it strictly as an investment tool.

If however they enjoy reading insightful and in-depth material on business and current affairs, then they need to consider how much that is worth to them in entertainment value, and in that case it may then be worth it to them.


Sums it up nicely! I’d be surprised if anyone is paying for an FT subscription (solely) to generate excess returns.
From the FT comments and as regular reader, subscribers genuinely seem to be willing to pay for the perceived higher quality content & reading for pleasure/knowledge value.

It’s like a Netflix subscription or Amazon Prime subscription; if you use the service enough to justify the cost then go for it and don’t if the subscription is going to be an under-utilised waste.

I used to read the FT daily in my previous employment so didn’t need to pay at all.

I did however have a subscription to Money Week, which can be cancelled at anytime as no commitment & I personally found that subscription to be of better value to me than the FT.

I don’t have a particularly strong opinion on whether an FT subscription is worth the price or not.

But following on from that, I think that one of the most valuable things about investing in general (besides the returns of course), is the fact that it gives you an incentive to learn.

If you agree that you’re likely to make smarter investment decisions based on the knowledge that you accumulate then you’re basically being paid back for at least some of the time that you spend on your research. And it’s very hard to quantify the value of the cumulative knowledge that you gain but in some cases, it can be extremely valuable.

There’s Buffett quote in favour of investing in yourself too of course.

The best investment you can make is in your own abilities. Anything you can do to develop your own abilities or business is likely to be more productive

Also, since business influences so many aspects of our lives, particularly our careers, I think it’s really useful to have the level of understanding that an entry level investor should probably have before investing in a company, for all sorts of practical reasons. To give an obvious example, you might end up discovering something so interesting / exciting that you end up getting a job in a new company or industry too.

Anyway, I guess the point of my ramble is that whether you’re learning about business & investing by reading the FT or some other source, it can be really worthwhile for those reasons too.


I wish I could find the study to reference (it was a US academic study), but it showed that investment returns are not positively correlated with investing knowledge. Quite the opposite in fact.

You need to know just enough to not be taken for a ride. After that, you think you know what’s going to go up, but so does everyone else. It’s the differential knowledge (i.e. knowing something about a stock that others don’t know) that counts and that’s hard to come by (legitimately at least).

I’d like to check that out!

I’ll try to find it!

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It may be this one Do financial experts make better investment decisions? - ScienceDirect

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