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After applying his machine-learning programs to central bank policy statements to churn out trading calls, a hedge fund-backed political economy specialist is training his sights on corporate earnings announcements.

Evan Schnidman, a 31-year-old who set up his own firm after a Harvard University Ph.D. dissertation that looked at the Federal Reserve’s communications, is hoping the approach that lured $3.3 million in a fundraising round last December will work in the corporate sphere.

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