What Do the Symbols Mean on a Stock Table?

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You can extract more information than the closing price of a security from a stock table. A stock table contains multiple statistics in a concise format that will assist your investment decisions once you understand and learn to use the table headings.

Company/Stock Name

Multiple listings with different abbreviations represent different classes of stock because some companies have both common and preferred shares.

Ticker Symbol

The ticker symbol is an abbreviation used to quickly identify the stock. Stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange have ticker symbols that range from one to three letters. Stocks traded on the NASDAQ have ticker symbols containing four letters.

Open

The "Open" column represents the price at which the stock first traded in the trading day.

High & Low

The "High" is the highest price at which the stock traded in the trading day. The "Low" is the lowest price at which the stock traded in the trading day.

Close

The "Close" is the price at which the stock traded in the last trade of the day.

Net Change, Percentage Change & Year-to-Date Change

Net change is the value change in dollars from the previous day's closing price to the most recent closing price. The percentage change represents the net change as a percentage of the previous day's close. The year-to-date change represents the percentage change in the stock price during the current calendar year.

Volume

The volume indicates the number of shares traded in the trading day.

52-Week High & Low

The 52-week high represents the highest price at which the stock traded during the trailing 52-week period. The 52-week low represents the lowest price at which the stock traded during the trailing 52-week period.

Dividend & Yield

The dividend represents the annual dividend payment distributed to investors per share of stock. If no dividend is indicated, the company does not pay dividends. The yield is the dividend divided by the closing price of the stock. It represents the rate of interest the stock would pay if you purchased it at the closing price.

PE Ratio

The PE ratio is the ratio of price to earnings. It is calculated by dividing the closing price by the stock's earnings per share from the last four quarters. If a stock does not have a PE ratio, it does not have positive EPS. The PE ratio reflects the multiple of earnings at which the stock trades and can be used to determine which stocks trade at a premium to others on an earnings-per-share basis. However, the PE ratio represents a limited view, accounting for the trailing EPS, and does not account for projected EPS or other financial statistics.

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