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Share Market Terminology: Part 2

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1.     NASDAQ

The NASDAQ Stock Market, also known as the NASDAQ, is an American stock exchange located in New York City. “NASDAQ” originally stood for “National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations Systems,” but the exchange’s official stance is that the acronym is obsolete. It is the largest electronic screen-based equity securities trading market in the United States and fourth largest by market capitalization in the world. As of January 13, 2011, there are 2,872 listings. The NASDAQ has more trading volume than any other electronic stock exchange in the world.

NASDAQ has three indices; NASDAQ Composite, NASDAQ-100 and NASDAQ Biotechnology Index. Its market capitalization is US$3.08 trillion (Aug 2010).

2.     Blue Chip

A blue-chip stock is stock in a company with a national reputation for quality, reliability and the ability to operate profitably in good times and bad. The most popular index which follows blue chips is the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average of 30 blue-chip stocks that are generally the leaders in their industry.

3.     Book Value

In accounting, book value or carrying value is the value of an asset according to its balance sheet account balance. For assets, the value is based on the original cost of the asset less any depreciation, amortization or impairment costs made against the asset. Traditionally, a company’s book value is its total assets minus intangible assets and liabilities. However, in practice, depending on the source of the calculation, book value may variably include goodwill, intangible assets, or both.

4.     Market Capitalization

Market capitalization (often market cap) is a measurement of size of a business enterprise (corporation) equal to the share price times the number of shares outstanding (shares that have been authorized, issued, and purchased by investors) of a publicly traded company. As owning stock represents ownership of the company, including all its equity, capitalization could represent the public opinion of a company’s net worth and is a determining factor in stock valuation. Likewise, the capitalization of stock markets or economic regions may be compared to other economic indicators. The total market capitalization of all publicly traded companies in the world was US$51.2 trillion in January 2007 and rose as high as US$57.5 trillion in May 2008 before dropping below US$50 trillion in August 2008 and slightly above US$40 trillion in September 2008.

5.     P/E Ratio

The P/E ratio (price-to-earnings ratio) of a stock (also called its “P/E”, or simply “multiple”) is a measure of the price paid for a share relative to the annual net income or profit earned by the firm per share. P/E reflects the capital structure of the company in question. P/E is a financial ratio used for valuation: a higher P/E ratio means that investors are paying more for each unit of net income, so the stock is more expensive compared to one with lower P/E ratio. The P/E ratio has units of years, which can be interpreted as “number of years of earnings to pay back purchase price”, ignoring the time value of money. In other words, P/E ratio shows current investor demand for a company share.

6.     Spread

The difference between the price paid for a bond (the bid) and the price at which it is offered to an investor (the offer).

7.     Preference Share

Capital stock which provides a specific dividend that is paid before any dividends are paid to common stock holders, and which takes precedence over common stock in the event of liquidation. Like common stock, preference shares represent partial ownership in a company, although preferred stock shareholders do not enjoy any of the voting rights of common stockholders. Also unlike common stock, preference shares pay a fixed dividend that does not fluctuate, although the company does not have to pay this dividend if it lacks the financial ability to do so. The main benefit to owning preference shares are that the investor has a greater claim on the company’s assets than common stockholders. Preferred shareholders always receive their dividends first and, in the event the company goes bankrupt, preferred shareholders are paid off before common stockholders.

8.     Equity share

Equity shares are those shares which are ordinary in the course of company’s business. They are also called as ordinary shares. These shareholders do not enjoy preference regarding payment of dividend and repayment of capital. Equity shareholders are paid dividend out of the profits made by a company. Higher the profits, higher will be the dividend and lower the profits, lower will be the dividend.

9.     Convertible Preference Share

These are preferred issues that the holders can exchange for a predetermined number of the company’s common stock. This exchange can occur at any time the investor chooses regardless of the current market price of the common stock. It is a one way deal so one cannot convert the common stock back to preferred stock.

10. Debenture

The term is used for a medium- to long-term debt instrument used by large companies to borrow money. In some countries the term is used interchangeably with bond, loan stock or note.

Debentures are generally freely transferable by the debenture holder. Debenture holders have no rights to vote in the company’s general meetings of shareholders, but they may have separate meetings or votes e.g. on changes to the rights attached to the debentures. The interest paid to them is a charge against profit in the company’s financial statements.

11. Mutual Fund

An open-ended fund operated by an investment company which raises money from shareholders and invests in a group of assets, in accordance with a stated set of objectives. mutual funds raise money by selling shares of the fund to the public, much like any other type of company can sell stock in itself to the public. Mutual funds then take the money they receive from the sale of their shares (along with any money made from previous investments) and use it to purchase various investment vehicles, such as stocks, bonds and money market instruments. In return for the money they give to the fund when purchasing shares, shareholders receive an equity position in the fund and, in effect, in each of its underlying securities. For most mutual funds, shareholders are free to sell their shares at any time, although the price of a share in a mutual fund will fluctuate daily, depending upon the performance of the securities held by the fund. Benefits of mutual funds include diversification and professional money management. Mutual funds offer choice, liquidity, and convenience, but charge fees and often require a minimum investment. A closed-end fund is often incorrectly referred to as a mutual fund, but is actually an investment trust. There are many types of mutual funds, including aggressive growth fund, asset allocation fund, balanced fund, blend fund, bond fund, capital appreciation fund, clone fund, closed fund, crossover fund, equity fund, fund of funds, global fund, growth fund, growth and income fund, hedge fund, income fund, index fund, international fund, money market fund, municipal bond fund, prime rate fund, regional fund, sector fund, specialty fund, stock fund, and tax-free bond fund.

12. Open-end Mutual Fund

A fund operated by an investment company which raises money from shareholders and invests in a group of assets, in accordance with a stated set of objectives. Open-end funds raise money by selling shares of the fund to the public, much like any other type of company which can sell stock in itself to the public. Mutual funds then take the money they receive from the sale of their shares (along with any money made from previous investments) and use it to purchase various investment vehicles, such as stocks, bonds and money market instruments. In return for the money they give to the fund when purchasing shares, shareholders receive an equity position in the fund and, in effect, in each of its underlying securities. For most open-end funds, shareholders are free to sell their shares at any time, although the price of a share in an open-end fund will fluctuate daily, depending upon the performance of the securities held by the fund. Benefits of open-end funds include diversification and professional money management. Open-end funds offer choice, liquidity, and convenience, but charge fees and often require a minimum investment.

13. Closed-end Mutual Fund

A fund with a fixed number of shares outstanding, and one which does not redeem shares the way a typical mutual fund does. Closed-end funds behave more like stock than open-end funds: closed-end funds issue a fixed number of shares to the public in an initial public offering, after which time shares in the fund are bought and sold on a stock exchange, and they are not obligated to issue new shares or redeem outstanding shares as open-end funds are. The price of a share in a closed-end fund is determined entirely by market demand, so shares can either trade below their net asset value (“at a discount”) or above it (“at a premium”).

14. Asset Management Company (AMC)

An Asset Management Company (AMC) is an investment management firm that invests the pooled funds of retail investors in securities in line with the stated investment objectives. For a fee, the investment company provides more diversification, liquidity, and professional management consulting service than is normally available to individual investors.

The diversification of portfolio is done by investing in such securities which are inversely correlated to each other. They collect money from investors by way of floating various mutual fund schemes.

15. Front End Load

A sales charge paid when an individual buys an investment, such as a mutual fund, limited partnership, annuity, or insurance policy. The load is clubbed with the first payment made by an investor, so the total initial payment is higher than the later payments. The purpose of a load is to cover administrative expenses and transaction costs and sometimes to discourage asset turnover.

16. Back End Load

A sales charge or commission paid when an individual sells an investment, such as a mutual fund or an annuity, intended to discourage withdrawals.

17. Company

A company is a form of business organization. It is a collection of individuals and physical assets with a common focus and an aim of gaining profits. This collection exists in Law and therefore a company is considered a “Legal Person”.

18. Common Seal

A common seal (sometimes referred to as the corporate seal or company seal) is an official seal used by a company. Company seals were predominantly used by companies in common law jurisdictions, although in modern times, most countries have abrogated the use of seals.

Traditionally, the seal was of some legal significance because the affixing of the seal signified that the document was the act and deed of the company, whereas when a document was merely signed by a director, then that was deemed to be an act carried out on behalf of the company by its agents, which was subject to applicable restrictions and limitations under the ordinary law of agency.

Corporate seals are generally only used for two purposes by corporations today:

Documents which need to be executed as deeds (as opposed to simple contracts), may be executed under the company’s common seal

Certain corporate documents, for example share certificates are often issued under the company seal (and some countries required that share certificates be issued under the common seal)

19. Company Secretary

A company secretary is a senior position in a private company or public organization, normally in the form of a managerial position or above. In the United States it is known as a corporate secretary.

The Company Secretary is responsible for the efficient administration of a company, particularly with regard to ensuring compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements and for ensuring that decisions of the Board of Directors are implemented.

Despite the name, the role is not a clerical or secretarial one in the usual sense. The company secretary ensures that an organization complies with relevant legislation and regulation, and keeps board members informed of their legal responsibilities. Company secretaries are the company’s named representative on legal documents, and it is their responsibility to ensure that the company and its directors operate within the law. It is also their responsibility to register and communicate with shareholders, to ensure that dividends are paid and to maintain company records, such as lists of directors and shareholders, and annual accounts.

20. Subsidiary Company

A subsidiary, in business matters, is an entity that is controlled by a separate higher entity. The controlled entity is called a company, corporation, or limited liability company; and in some cases can be a government or state-owned enterprise, and the controlling entity is called its parent (or the parent company).

A parent company does not have to be the larger or “more powerful” entity; it is possible for the parent company to be smaller than a subsidiary, or the parent may be larger than some or all of its subsidiaries (if it has more than one). The parent and the subsidiary do not necessarily have to operate in the same locations, or operate the same businesses, but it is also possible that they could conceivably be competitors in the marketplace. Also, because a parent company and a subsidiary are separate entities, it is entirely possible for one of them to be involved in legal proceedings, bankruptcy, tax delinquency, indictment and/or under investigation, while the other is not.

The most common way that control of a subsidiary is achieved, is through the ownership of shares in the subsidiary by the parent. These shares give the parent the necessary votes to determine the composition of the board of the subsidiary, and so exercise control. This gives rise to the common presumption that 50% plus one share is enough to create a subsidiary. There are, however, other ways that control can come about, and the exact rules both as to what control is needed, and how it is achieved, can be complex. A subsidiary may itself have subsidiaries, and these, in turn, may have subsidiaries of their own. A parent and all its subsidiaries together are called a “group”, although this term can also apply to cooperating companies and their subsidiaries with varying degrees of shared ownership.

Subsidiaries are separate, distinct legal entities for the purposes of taxation and regulation. For this reason, they differ from divisions, which are businesses fully integrated within the main company, and not legally or otherwise distinct from it.

Note

This list is being compiled using definitions provided at various sources. I tried my best to give the best general explanation of all the term. If any term need correction or improvement in its explanation, please use the comment section to do so. I will look through it.

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