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Daily Stock Charts

"There is no shortage of internet sites that provide current stock quotes," says investopedia.com. The problem is, how do you find them, which are best, and do they include charts for those who need a visual representation of the money they're making or losing?

But let's back up just a second. There are so many questions to have answered before you even get to the part where you have to see the data.

"As it turns out, when most people talk about "the market," Investopedia says, "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."

Now that we've got that out of the way, "Just about any large financial portal will let you to enter a ticker symbol to get the latest (15-minute delayed) quote. Traditionally, historical quotes on stocks and indexes were hard to come by for the general public, but this is no longer the case thanks to the advent of the internet."

Securities

"Yahoo! Finance and Investopedia Research are good sites if you're looking for a historical range of data on an individual security. To get to the historical prices, enter the ticker symbol of the stock in question on the main page. This will take you to the "Quotes & Info" page of the company whose ticker symbol you entered then, simply click on "Historical Prices". This tool lets you enter a date range as well as daily, weekly or monthly closing prices. Another useful feature at the bottom of the same page is the "Download to Spreadsheet" link which allows you to review the numbers in Excel, for example," says Investopedia.

Indexes

"Yahoo! Finance is also a good place to go for historical index data. Also on the "Quotes & Info" page are the major U.S. indexes, or you can look up world indexes, and simply click on the links for the index you're looking for and then again go to the "Historical Prices" page for past figures."

"However not all indexes will have long-term data. If the index you're looking for does not have the date or range you're seeking, try Bigcharts.com. While it doesn't have the ability to enter a date range, it does allow for a date which it then brackets, providing a two-month range."

For more information, the site recommends Data Mining For Invest Indexes: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and their tutorial on Index Investing.

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