What is the 'Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index'

The Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index is the former name of the Wilshire U.S. Small-Cap Index, a market-capitalization-weighted index.

BREAKING DOWN 'Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index'

The Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index was later rebranded the Wilshire US Small-Cap Index when the partnership between Dow Jones and Wilshire Associates ended. It included the small-cap subset of the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Composite Index.

The Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Composite Index, also known as the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index, was the most broadly based U.S. stock index and was previously maintained by Dow Jones Indexes. The Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index contained the companies ranked 751 to 2,500 as measured by market capitalization, as is now done under the name Wilshire U.S. Small-Cap Index.

The index as it is now known comprises four segments of market capitalization, each with a different index association:

  • Wilshire U.S. Large-Cap Index: Stocks ranked 1-750
  • Wilshire U.S. Mid-Cap Index: Stocks ranked 501-1,000
  • Wilshire U.S. Small-Cap Index: Stocks ranked 751-2,500
  • Wilshire U.S. Micro-Cap Index: Stocks ranked 2,501+

Comparing Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index with Other Dow Jones Indices

An index enables tracking of the performance of selected concepts, sectors, or industries and their associated financial products. It serves as one benchmark for measuring and comparing the performance of investments. Indexes can be very broad or quite narrow in specifics and measures. 

Indexes, like the Dow Jones U.S. Total Market Index, provide useful information, including helping investors understand past trends and changes in investing patterns, offering snapshots of trends, and providing a benchmark for all types of comparisons. Indexes react to actual trades, and while investors may be swayed by material news and industry buzz, indexes will always be mathematical calculations that aren't swayed by human emotion. In that respect, stock indexes provide historical perspective, especially when one is looking for long-term trends, and may be more valuable in that way than in forecasting future market movement. 

While the Dow Jones Wilshire Small-Cap Index is no longer a Dow Jones product since the partnership between Dow Jones and Wilshire Associates ended, many other Dow Jones indices continue to exist. Current Dow Jones indices include the Dow Jones U.S. Total Market Index, which is a market-capitalization-weighted index maintained providing broad-based coverage of the U.S. stock market. The Dow Jones U.S. Market Index represents the upper 95 percent of the U.S. stock market based on market capitalization and is also known as the Dow Jones U.S. Index. The Dow Jones large-cap, mid-cap, small-cap, value and growth indexes all use the Dow Jones U.S. Total Market Index as the basis for their holdings. In total, the Dow Jones U.S. Total Market Index includes about 3,650 U.S. stocks.

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