What statistics software do most financial shops use to analyze data, forecast, etc.? I’ve used R and Stata in university but I’d like to brush up on whatever software people tend to use in the real world. Thanks.

The ones I’ve encountered used by people are: SAS S-plus (basically R with extra paid-for add ons) Matlab (not really a statistics program, but some people use it that way) Not sure if I’ve seen Stata used, but people know about it.

Ahh Matlab… I remember working on a singular value decomposition image compression project with Matlab, didn’t know you can use it for stats!

i would add SPSS to that list. stata ive heard is pretty good for econometrics.

yeah that’s actually the only course where i used stata

Used MATLAB for Multiprocessor Techniques … so is that the same thing we are talking about here? I used to detest that crap.

I find matlab very unsuitable for most statistical work, but people who think in terms of data matrices can do it. I find Matlab pretty similar to R (which I also find challenging to use for statistics: less for the actual statistical power and more because of clumsy data management methods). Stata has some really nice features for time-series analysis. I use Stata for my own stuff. SAS seems to be the most common option, but the license is expensive and has to be renewed every year.

Statistica is another one. Although it is rarely used. J.

EVIEWS I’m using it in my MS Finance Econometrics course right now. Very good. My professor said its outstanding relative to other options.

Ditto. Eviews contains all the standard estimation methods but also includes many of the most recent estimation techniques. It is user friendly and excellent value for the money. I hear good things about SPSS as well.

My sense (mostly from an academic research perspective): - most people use SAS as their primary research tool. It does most things pretty well, handles most statistics very well, and can’t be beat for manipulating/merging/cleaning data up. The most common second package is Stata - excellent range of applications and programming capabilities.

I used SPSS in my courses. It’s a nice package for data in the social sciences: psychology, sociology, political science. I found it a little challenging to do with time series stuff, and so stayed away from it for econometric analysis. My hard-core economist colleagues liked using Gauss. I think Joey’s used it too. I haven’t heard many financial shops using it, though if someone really wants it, I guess they can get it. I’ve never heard of EVIEWS; I’ll have to check it out.

I believe I have most often seen SAS, followed by SPSS for pure play statistics. I personally feel Matlabs potential to be superior for any dynamic analysis based on custom forecasting algorithms. But my experience so far lies firmly with SPSS only.

I agree that Matlab is probably the most versatile tool if you have a strong affinity for mathematical statistics. Thanks for the replies everyone, and keep them coming, it sounds like I should brush up on my SAS.