1. Index Investing: Introduction
  2. Index Investing: What Is An Index?
  3. Index Investing: The Dow Jones Industrial Average
  4. Index Investing: The Standard & Poor's 500 Index
  5. Index Investing: The Nasdaq Composite Index
  6. Index Investing: The Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index
  7. Index Investing: The Russell 2000 Index
  8. Index Investing: Other Indexes
  9. Index Investing: Index Funds
  10. Index Investing: Conclusion


Stock market talk is everywhere, from TV and radio, to the newspapers and the web. But what does it mean when people say that "the market turned in a great performance today?" What is "the market" anyway?

As it turns out, when most people talk about "the market," they are actually referring to an index. With the growing importance of the stock market in our society, the names of indexes such as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite have become part of our everyday vocabulary.

This tutorial will define what an index is, discuss some of the major stock indexes and explain how you can invest in the stock market using index funds.

(If you aren't familiar with the stock market and mutual funds, we suggest that you check out our Stock Basics Tutorial and Mutual Fund Basics Tutorial before reading on.)


Index Investing: What Is An Index?
Related Articles
  1. Investing

    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.
  2. Investing

    Mutual Fund Basics Tutorial

    Learn about the basics - and the pitfalls - of investing in mutual funds.
  3. Investing

    5 Things You Need To Know About Index Funds

    Index funds, at their best, offer a low-cost way for investors to track popular stock and bond market indexes. But not all index funds are created equally.
  4. Investing

    Reading Financial Tables Tutorial

    Learn about six common types of financial tables and figure out how to interpret them.
  5. Investing

    What You Need to Know About Mutual Funds

    Mutual funds are a good investment opportunity, but investors should know how they operate.
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. Where else can I save for retirement after I max out my Roth IRA?

    The first option to explore is to determine if you can contribute to a 401(k), 403(b), or 457 plan at work. If your employer ...
  2. How did George Soros "break the Bank of England"?

    In Britain, Black Wednesday (September 16, 1992) is known as the day that speculators broke the pound. They didn't actually ...
  3. What counts as "debts" and "income" when calculating my debt-to-income (DTI) ratio?

    It's important to know your debt-to-income ratio because it's the figure lenders use to measure your ability to repay the ...
  4. Who are Monsanto's main competitors?

    Learn about Monsanto Company's two main operating divisions and its main competitors within each sector, including The Mosaic ...
Trading Center