Finding the total percentage gain or loss on a portfolio requires a few simple calculations. First, you should understand how percentage gains or losses are found on an individual security. To find the net gain or loss, subtract the purchase price from the current price and divide the difference by the purchase prices of the asset. For example, if you buy a stock today for $50 and tomorrow it is worth $52, your percentage gain is 4% ( ($52 - $50)/$50 ).

Finding the daily return on your portfolio requires a different approach. Because the stocks will usually have different purchase prices, a percentage gain in one security may not be equivalent to an equal percentage gain in another. Simply adding the individual percentage returns will not give an accurate measure of portfolio return. By adjusting the above method of finding a stock's return, you can find the percentage return of a portfolio. Instead of using the purchase price and current value of the stock, you will do your calculations based on the total value of your portfolio. For example, on June 1, your portfolio is valued at $14,500. After a week of market activity, your portfolio value increases to $15,225. Your percentage return on your portfolio for the week is 5% ( ($15,225 - $14,500)/$14,500 ).

For more information on evaluating your portfolio, read Equity Portfolio Management Mechanics.

  1. How do I calculate my portfolio's investment returns and performance?

    Learn the basic principles underlying the data and calculations used to perform personal rates of return on investment portfolios. Read Answer >>
  2. How do I calculate my year-to-date (YTD) return on my portfolio?

    Find out how to calculate the year-to-date return of a portfolio, including examples of YTD return calculations with and ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Managing Wealth

    3 Steps to Assess Your Portfolio's Annual Performance

    Learn about three simple steps you can use to evaluate the annual performance of your investment portfolio, and why rate of return isn't enough.
  2. Investing

    Calculating The Means

    Learn more about the different ways you can calculate your portfolio's average return.
  3. Investing

    How to Build Your Optimally-Balanced Portfolio

    How do you build an optimally balanced portfolio? A lot depends on your appetite for risk, and your understanding of rebalancing.
  4. Investing

    Rebalance Your Portfolio To Stay On Track

    Like a tune-up for a car, this re-alignment should minimize trouble down the road.
  5. Managing Wealth

    Achieving Optimal Asset Allocation

    Minimizing risk while maximizing return with the right mix of securities is the key to achieving your optimal asset allocation.
  6. Managing Wealth

    Is Your Portfolio Overweight?

    As time passes, in order to remain profitable, investors need to put certain parts of their portfolio on a diet.
  7. Financial Advisor

    5 Popular Portfolio Types

    Learning how to build these portfolios will increase your investing confidence and give you financial control.
  8. Financial Advisor

    Top Tips for Deducting Stock Losses

    Investors who know the rules can turn their losing picks into tax savings. Here's how to deduct your stock losses.
  9. Investing

    Mutual Fund Tune-Up Delivers High-Powered Performance

    Rebalancing your portfolio will protect you from risk and ensure that your investments are performing at their best.
  1. Portfolio Return

    The monetary return experienced by a holder of a portfolio. Portfolio ...
  2. Return

    The gain or loss of a security in a particular period. The return ...
  3. Capital Growth Strategy

    An asset allocation strategy that seeks to maximize capital appreciation, ...
  4. Portfolio Weight

    The percentage composition of a particular holding in a portfolio. ...
  5. Portfolio Investment

    A holding of an asset in a portfolio. A portfolio investment ...
  6. Inefficient Portfolio

    An inefficient portfolio is an investment portfolio that delivers ...
Hot Definitions
  1. Perkins Loan

    A loan program that provides low-interest student loans to undergraduate and graduate students who demonstrate exceptional ...
  2. Wealth Management

    A high-level professional service that combines financial/investment advice, accounting/tax services, retirement planning ...
  3. Assets Under Management - AUM

    The market value of assets that an investment company manages on behalf of investors. Assets under management (AUM) is looked ...
  4. Subprime Auto Loan

    A type of auto loan approved for people with substandard credit scores or limited credit histories. There is no official ...
  5. Racketeering

    A fraudulent service built to serve a problem that wouldn't otherwise exist without the influence of the enterprise offering ...
  6. Federal Debt

    The total amount of money that the United States federal government owes to creditors. The government's creditors include ...
Trading Center