A:

Dow Jones, or more precisely "Dow Jones & Company", is one of the largest business and financial news companies in the world. The firm was founded in 1896 by Charles Dow, Edward T. Jones and Charles Bergstresser. In 1889 they founded The Wall Street Journal, which remains one of the most influential financial publications.

It is easy to confuse Dow Jones with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA). Often referred to as "the Dow", the DJIA is one of the most watched stock indexes in the world, containing companies like General Electric, Microsoft, Coca-Cola and Exxon. Dow Jones (the company) owns the Dow Jones Industrial Average as well as many other indexes that represent different sectors of the economy.

In the world of finance, you'll often hear people ask, "How did New York do today?" or "How did the market perform today?" In both cases, these people are likely referring to the DJIA as it is the most widely used index, above both the S&P 500 Index and the Nasdaq Composite Index.

To find out how the Dow is calculated, see Calculating the Dow Jones Industrial Average. For more background on stock indexes in general, see our index investing tutorial.

RELATED FAQS
  1. Is the Dow Jones a stock exchange?

    Learn about the Dow Jones Industrial Average and its impact. This historically significant index provides a daily snapshot ... Read Answer >>
  2. Is the Dow Jones a public company?

    Find out how the Dow Jones Industrial Average tracks the health of the U.S. economy. This fluctuating number indicates the ... Read Answer >>
  3. Can you buy shares in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA)?

    Invest in the Dow Jones Industrial Average index through index funds or ETFs. Read Answer >>
  4. How does the DOW Jones and S&P 500 indicators help predict the performance of the ...

  5. When was the Dow Jones Industrial Average first calculated?

    Charles Henry Dow was born on a farm in Connecticut on November 6, 1851. Farming didn't suit Charles Dow, however, so he ... Read Answer >>
  6. When can you trade the stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA)?

    Find out when you can trade shares linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average during NYSE and Nasdaq trading sessions. Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. ETFs & Mutual Funds

    Why The Dow Matters

    Although the DJIA only includes 30 stocks, it can tell you a lot about the market as a whole.
  2. Investing

    Giants of Finance: Charles Dow

    Find out how this financial visionary helped everyday people enter the world of finance.
  3. Investing

    Understanding The S&P Dow Jones Indices

    S&P Dow Jones Indices offer more than 830,000 indices, including the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
  4. Markets

    How Now, Dow? What Moves The DJIA?

    Find out how this index tracks market movements and where it falls short.
  5. Investing

    Why You Need To Know About S&P Dow Jones Indices

    This Article introduces the S&P Dow Jones Indices (SPDJI), available variant categories and index trading advantages
  6. ETFs & Mutual Funds

    Understanding And Playing The Dow Jones Industrial Average

    Learn strategies for investing in this price-weighted index and how to interpret its movements.
  7. Trading

    Dow Theory

    Learn about the foundation upon which technical analysis is based.
  8. Markets

    DJIA vs. Dow Transport: A Telling Divergence?

    The Dow Transport Index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average are sending mixed signals. What does it mean?
  9. Markets

    4 Famous Companies Dropped From the Dow Jones

    Learn about some of the largest and most famous companies that have been removed from the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) over its 119-year history.
  10. Trading

    Dow Theory: Introduction

    By Chad Langager and Casey Murphy, senior analyst of ChartAdvisor.comAny attempt to trace the origins of technical analysis would inevitably lead to Dow theory. While more than 100 years old, ...
RELATED TERMS
  1. Dow 30

    Commonly referred to as just the "Dow," the Dow 30 was created ...
  2. Dow Jones 65 Composite Average

    A composite index that measures changes within the 65 companies ...
  3. Dow Jones Industrial Average - DJIA

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average ...
  4. Dow Jones U.S. Market Index

    A market-capitalization-weighted index maintained by Dow Jones ...
  5. Theoretical Dow Jones Index

    A method of calculating a Dow Jones index (most often the DJIA) ...
  6. Dow Jones Wilshire Mid-Cap Index

    A market-capitalization weighted index maintained by Dow Jones ...
Hot Definitions
  1. Duration

    A measure of the sensitivity of the price (the value of principal) of a fixed-income investment to a change in interest rates. ...
  2. Dove

    An economic policy advisor who promotes monetary policies that involve the maintenance of low interest rates, believing that ...
  3. Cyclical Stock

    An equity security whose price is affected by ups and downs in the overall economy. Cyclical stocks typically relate to companies ...
  4. Front Running

    The unethical practice of a broker trading an equity based on information from the analyst department before his or her clients ...
  5. After-Hours Trading - AHT

    Trading after regular trading hours on the major exchanges. The increasing popularity of electronic communication networks ...
  6. Omnibus Account

    An account between two futures merchants (brokers). It involves the transaction of individual accounts which are combined ...
Trading Center