Yield

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What is a 'Yield'

The income return on an investment. This refers to the interest or dividends received from a security and is usually expressed annually as a percentage based on the investment's cost, its current market value or its face value.
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BREAKING DOWN 'Yield'

This seemingly simple term, without a qualifier, can be rather confusing to investors.

For example, there are two stock dividend yields. If you buy a stock for $30 (cost basis) and its current price and annual dividend is $33 and $1, respectively, the "cost yield" will be 3.3% ($1/$30) and the "current yield" will be 3% ($1/$33).

Bonds have four yields: coupon (the bond interest rate fixed at issuance), current (the bond interest rate as a percentage of the current price of the bond), and yield to maturity (an estimate of what an investor will receive if the bond is held to its maturity date). Non-taxable municipal bonds will have a tax-equivalent (TE) yield determined by the investor's tax bracket.

Mutual fund yields are an annual percentage measure of income (dividends and interest) earned by the fund's portfolio, net of the fund's expenses. In addition, the "SEC yield" is an indicator of the percentage yield on a fund based on a 30-day period.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. What is the difference between the yield of stock and the yield of a bond?

    Explore and understand the various meanings of the investment term "yield" as it is applied to equity investments and bond ... Read Answer >>
  2. Can I use the current yield to compare a bond to an equity investment?

    Learn about the different types of yield measurements for stocks and bonds, and find out how to make careful comparisons ... Read Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between yield and rate of return?

    Read about the differences between yield and rate of return. See why many novice investors often struggle more with the concept ... Read Answer >>
  4. Should investors focus more on the current yield or face value of a bond?

    Find out when investors should focus on a bond's current yield versus its face value, including an example of how current ... Read Answer >>
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    The main difference between yields and interest rates is that each term refers to different financial instruments. Yield ... Read Answer >>
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