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What are Stock Market Quotes?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 29 November 2016
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Stock market quotes are lists of prices for stocks at various times during a trading day. Stock quotes typically include a range of numbers that let investors know how a stock is performing at a given time. Often, people look for stock quotes in the newspaper, through which they can follow stocks and see daily updates. A person may also want to see up-to-the minute stock market quotes, which are often available online.

When a person looks for stock quotes, he finds not just one number or price, but also a whole range of numbers that collectively provide him with information about how a stock is doing. A stock quote usually includes a stock symbol, which is unique to the company that is offering the stock as well as the stock’s price per share. Stock market quotes typically include information about the volume of the stock that is being traded at the time as well as other pertinent information. The particular information that is included may depend on the source from which a person obtains the stock quotes.

A person can also determine whether the value of a stock has gone up or down by reading stock market quotes. Often, stock quotes include little arrows that indicate losses or gains in value. For example, a green arrow that points upward would indicate an increase in value while a red arrow that points downward would usually mean a loss of value.

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Among the other details stock market quotes often include are year-to-date change percentages, the highs and lows of the stock over the past year, dividend rates, and yield percentages. Stock market quotes often include a close number as well, which represents the final price at which the stock was traded on a given day. Sometimes stock quotes also include footnotes that point out related information that may be of interest to investors.

Ticker tape is a term that is often associated with stock quotes. Ticker tape is essentially a group of stock quotes that are arranged in a line. In the past, stock quotes were sent and received via telegraph messages, and a ticking sound was audible when the quotes were printed on long, narrow pieces of paper; the ticking sound and the thin paper led to the term ticker tape. Today, ticker tape isn’t used to deliver stock quotes, but a digital version of it may be viewed on some finance- or news-related television programs. In such cases, it is usually displayed along the bottom or top of the viewer’s screen.

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