The stock market is a very fluid entity and prices change routinely. Not only will there be different quotes for a particular stock at the end of a day's trading, the price may very well change several times during the day. For this reason, it's vital to get updated quotes if you don't act on a stock market quote soon after it's offered.
Here are some pieces of information that will be included on a typical stock market quote.
- The name of the company - This may sound like an elementary piece of data, but keep in mind that this will usually be the company as it appears on the stock exchange on which it's traded. It may very well be only a couple of letters so you need to know the trade name of a company before you accept a stock quote. There may also be letters on this portion of the quote to help you determine special features about the stock. It is also known as stock symbols.
- High and low - There will usually be a 52-week high and low unless the company hasn't been traded for at least one year prior to the quote. These numbers will represent the highest and lowest point of the stock's history and can be used to judge the amount of fluctuation for any particular stock. In addition, there'll be a daily high and low to tell you where the stock has been traded during the current day's activity. You'll also find the price at the close of the current day's trading, if trading has ceased.
- The amount of dividends,
- ratio of earnings
- and total number of stocks being traded will also be included on a stock quote.