Market Price

DEFINITION of 'Market Price'

The current price at which an asset or service can be bought or sold. Economic theory contends that the market price converges at a point where the forces of supply and demand meet. Shocks to either the supply side and/or demand side can cause the market price for a good or service to be re-evaluated.

BREAKING DOWN 'Market Price'

For example, suppose that the market price for a widget has been $10 for a number of years. Suddenly, the market price shifts to $20 when it is announced that only half of this year's widgets will be sold in stores. In this case, a drop in supply causes the market price to increase.

In regard to stocks, the market price of a stock is the most recent price at which the stock was traded. It does not guarantee that an investor will receive the same price upon buying the stock afterward. For example, suppose that a company's stock has been halted from trading because it was planning to release some material news in the next hour. While the market price of the stock at the time will be the last price at which the stock traded, buying the stock when trading resumes will definitely yield a different price.

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