A:

There is no shortage of internet sites that provide current stock quotes. Just about any large financial portal will let you to enter a ticker symbol to get the latest (15-minute delayed) quote. Traditionally, historical quotes on stocks and indexes were hard to come by for the general public, but this is no longer the case thanks to the advent of the internet.

Securities
Yahoo! Finance and Investopedia Research are good sites if you're looking for a historical range of data on an individual security. To get to the historical prices, enter the ticker symbol of the stock in question on the main page. This will take you to the "Quotes & Info" page of the company whose ticker symbol you entered then, simply click on "Historical Prices". This tool lets you enter a date range as well as daily, weekly or monthly closing prices. Another useful feature at the bottom of the same page is the "Download to Spreadsheet" link which allows you to review the numbers in Excel, for example.

Indexes
Yahoo! Finance is also a good place to go for historical index data. Also on the "Quotes & Info" page are the major U.S. indexes, or you can look up world indexes, and simply click on the links for the index you're looking for and then again go to the "Historical Prices" page for past figures.

However not all indexes will have long-term data. If the index you're looking for does not have the date or range you're seeking, try Bigcharts.com. While it doesn't have the ability to enter a date range, it does allow for a date which it then brackets, providing a two-month range.

(For further reading, see Data Mining For Investors, Indexes: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and/or our tutorial on Index Investing.)

RELATED FAQS
  1. How do I find historical prices for stocks?

    Whether for research purposes, bookkeeping or even general interest in historical performance, this is a question that many ... Read Answer >>
  2. Do hedge funds have ticker symbols?

    Discover whether or not hedge funds have ticker symbols, where you can find ticker symbols and the significance of a ticker ... Read Answer >>
  3. Why do all mutual fund tickers have an X at the end?

    It's true that all mutual funds' tickers have an X at the end of their symbol. The reason for this is to distinguish between ... Read Answer >>
  4. How can I find out if a company I like is included in an index?

    There are a few ways to find out what indexes a company is involved in, and investors should take note of them when they ... Read Answer >>
  5. What is a stock ticker?

    A stock ticker is a report of the price for certain securities, updated continuously throughout the trading session by the ... Read Answer >>
  6. What do all of the letters in a stock option ticker symbol mean?

    The option ticker explains four main things about the option: the underlying stock, whether it is a call or a put option, ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Term

    Keeping Securities Clear With Ticker Symbols

    A ticker symbol is a group of characters that represent a specific, publicly traded security that’s listed on an exchange.
  2. Popular Resources for Equity Research and Analysis: Chapter 4: Sites Specializing in Free Financial ...

    In addition to the above websites, a wide and growing array of free sites specialize in investment-related data and information. Below is an overview of the more tenured sites that have a reputation ...
  3. Investing Basics

    The Pros and Cons of Indexes

    Learn about the advantages and disadvantages of stock indexes and passive index funds. Discover how there is an opportunity cost to using index funds.
  4. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    5 Reasons To Avoid Index Funds

    Indexes are a hands-off way for investors to access the markets, but in some cases, nothing beats active investing.
  5. Investing

    The One ETF To Own The Top Internet Company Stocks

    Grab a pie of booming online businesses in one shot! Here is the one ETF that lets you own stock in the top Internet companies.
  6. Options & Futures

    Using Index Futures To Predict The Future

    Want to know whether the stock market will open up or down? Check out the index futures.
  7. Investing Basics

    What is an Index?

    An index is a statistical means of calculating a change in an economy or market.
  8. Investing Basics

    An Introduction To Stock Market Indexes

    Investopedia explains the five most talked about indexes and what makes them all different.
  9. Investing

    Index Funds Explained

    Indexing strategies have been around for long, but many investors still don’t understand what a powerful tool they can be when constructing a portfolio.
  10. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    How to Buy Vanguard Funds: A Quick Overview

    Learn how to use Vanguard's cutting-edge online tools to research, select and buy the right mutual funds for your investment needs.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Ticker Symbol

    An arrangement of characters (usually letters) representing a ...
  2. Hard-Coded Stock

    This is a term that refers to a company's stock symbol or ticker ...
  3. Historical Returns

    The past performance of a security or index. Analysts review ...
  4. Ticker Tape

    A computerized device that relays financial information to investors ...
  5. Historical Currency Exchange Rates

    A collection of historical exchange rates that are used to provide ...
  6. Currency History

    The historical values of a base currency in relation to the values ...
Hot Definitions
  1. MACD Technical Indicator

    Moving Average Convergence Divergence (or MACD) is a trend-following momentum indicator that shows the relationship between ...
  2. Over-The-Counter - OTC

    Over-The-Counter (or OTC) is a security traded in some context other than on a formal exchange such as the NYSE, TSX, AMEX, ...
  3. Quarter - Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4

    A three-month period on a financial calendar that acts as a basis for the reporting of earnings and the paying of dividends.
  4. Weighted Average Cost Of Capital - WACC

    Weighted average cost of capital (WACC) is a calculation of a firm's cost of capital in which each category of capital is ...
  5. Basis Point (BPS)

    A unit that is equal to 1/100th of 1%, and is used to denote the change in a financial instrument. The basis point is commonly ...
  6. Sharing Economy

    An economic model in which individuals are able to borrow or rent assets owned by someone else.
Trading Center