DEFINITION of 'Descriptive Statistics'
A set of brief descriptive coefficients that summarizes a given data set, which can either be a representation of the entire population or a sample. The measures used to describe the data set are measures of central tendency and measures of variability or dispersion.
INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Descriptive Statistics'
Measures of central tendency include the mean, median and mode, while measures of variability include the standard deviation (or variance), the minimum and maximum variables, kurtosis and skewness.
Descriptive statistics provide a useful summary of security returns when performing empirical and analytical analysis, as they provide a historical account of return behavior. Although past information is useful in any analysis, one should always consider the expectations of future events.

Variance
The spread between numbers in a data set, measuring Variance ... 
Chi Square Statistic
A measurement of how expectations compare to results. The data ... 
Statistical Significance
A result that is not likely to occur randomly, but rather is ... 
Standard Deviation
1. A measure of the dispersion of a set of data from its mean. ... 
Skewness
Describe asymmetry from the normal distribution in a set of statistical ... 
Kurtosis
A statistical measure used to describe the distribution of observed ...

What is the difference between a simple random sample and a stratified random sample?
Simple random samples and stratified random samples differ in how the sample is drawn from the overall population of data. ... Read Full Answer >> 
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using systematic sampling?
As a statistical sampling method, systematic sampling is simpler and more straightforward than random sampling. It can also ... Read Full Answer >> 
What is the difference between the standard error of means and standard deviation?
The standard deviation, or SD, measures the amount of variability or dispersion for a subject set of data from the mean, ... Read Full Answer >> 
What is the theory of asymmetric information in economics?
The theory of asymmetric information was developed in the 1970s and 1980s as a plausible explanation for common phenomena ... Read Full Answer >> 
How does market risk differ from specific risk?
Market risk and specific risk are two different forms of risk that affect assets. All investment assets can be separated ... Read Full Answer >> 
How is perpetuity used in the Dividend Discount Model?
The basic dividend discount model (DDM) creates an estimate of the constant growth rate, in perpetuity, expected for dividends ... Read Full Answer >>

Bonds & Fixed Income
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Markets
Introduction To Fundamental Analysis
Learn this easytounderstand technique of analyzing a company's financial statements and reports. 
Economics
What Is Supply?
Supply is the amount of goods a producer is willing to produce at a given price, and is one of the most basic concepts in economics. 
Economics
Modified Internal Rate of Return (MIRR)
Modified internal rate of return (MIRR) is a variant of the more traditional internal rate of return calculation. 
Fundamental Analysis
What is Quantitative Analysis?
Quantitative analysis refers to the use of mathematical computations to analyze markets and investments. 
Fundamental Analysis
Understanding the Simple Random Sample
A simple random sample is a subset of a statistical population in which each member of the subset has an equal probability of being chosen. 
Economics
What is Systematic Sampling?
Systematic sampling is similar to random sampling, but it uses a pattern for the selection of the sample. 
Fundamental Analysis
Explaining Expected Return
The expected return is a tool used to determine whether or not an investment has a positive or negative average net outcome. 
Economics
Understanding the Fisher Effect
The Fisher effect states that the real interest rate equals the nominal interest rate minus the expected inflation rate. 
Fundamental Analysis
Explaining the Geometric Mean
The average of a set of products, the calculation of which is commonly used to determine the performance results of an investment or portfolio.