A means to measure a particular market, or section of a market. In the United States, the best-known stock market indices are the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA, or Dow) and the Standard & Poors 500 (S&P 500 or S&P); the former contains thirty large- company stocks, the latter, five hundred. Other US indices include the Wilshire 5000 (pretty much every stock), the S&P Midcap 400 (medium-sized companies), the Russell 2000 (small companies), often hear newscasters talk about the Dow or the S&P because indices give us a quick look at what’s going on in the market. (See also: S&P 500, Dow)

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