Commonly Used Stock Exchange Abbreviations
- The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), nicknamed the "Big Board," is based in New York City and is the largest equities exchange in the world. The exchange, which has operated since 1792, is where most of the largest and best-known U.S. stocks are bought and sold.
The exchange has gone through some major changes in recent years. It became a publicly traded company in 2005, its parent company merged with a European exchange in 2007 to become NYSE Euronext, and it acquired the American Stock Exchange (AMEX)--the country's third-largest stock exchange--in 2008.
- The Nasdaq, created in 1971, became the world's first electronic stock market and, true to its technology-steeped origins, is now home to many of America's best-known high-tech companies, including Microsoft, Google, Yahoo and Intel. The name of the market was first an acronym for National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation, though that title has become outdated and Nasdaq is now the market's formal name. The Nasdaq facilitates trading for more than 5,000 of the most actively traded stocks that are not listed in major exchanges.
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is a price-weighted average of 30 of the most important and influential companies in the United States. The average is used as a gauge of the stock market's overall health. Another common market barometer is the S&P 500, which is an index created by Standard & Poor's and represents the 500 most commonly traded stocks in America. The DJIA, often referred to as "the Dow," was created by Charles Dow in 1896 and has become the oldest and most-watched index in the world. The index includes companies such as Disney, ExxonMobil, General Electric and Wal-Mart.