We begin with the most foundational basics here in discussing what is a share of stock and what is its ticker symbol.
Also called equity, a share of stock is a genuine possession claim upon the company who issues it. Today, shares of stock are digitized and electronically traded. However, it is still possible to call up the company that you own stock in and ask an actual hard copy share of the stock be sent to you. When a company has inventory the general public can purchase, this means they’re publicly traded.
Example of a hard copy share of Pepsi’s (PEP) inventory:
Companies issue stock to raise cash to cultivate their operations. Hopefully this will increase the corporation’s profits that will ultimately increase the value of the inventory. It can be more expensive to issue equity to cultivate a company, but often times the business receives additional money for doing this compared to issuing some thing else such as debt (bonds).
HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY A Business’S STOCK?
Every company that’s publicly traded has a ticker symbol which is their stock’s unique identifier. This is typically just known as the provider’s symbol. This is the way you check on the internet to learn what price their stock is trading at and start researching the company. Should you ever wish to learn whether a company is publicly traded and what their stock symbol is, you can simply research online or call up the company and ask. I’d suggest just simply searching online for”What’s __ firm’s stock symbol?” If they have one, then they are publicly traded.
§ Nike’s stock symbol — NKE
§ Under Amour’s stock symbol — UA
§ Apple’s stock symbol — AAPL
KEY TAKE AWAY: Businesses sell pieces of their company to the public to raise money to grow larger. These bits they sell are shares of stock which you and I will purchase. In so doing, we legally own part of the firm.
ACTION STEP: Select any 3 firms that come to mind and look them up to determine if they’re publicly traded. These may be areas you shop for groceries, clothing, or even work at.