Working of Stock Ticker


Triston Martin

Jun 30, 2022

Anyone who has watched a financial network or looked at a market website knows that the values of securities, most notably stock prices, are constantly fluctuating. This is especially true for stock prices. Any change in the security price, regardless of whether that change is an increase or a decrease. Investors and traders use stock tickers to keep track of current market conditions and the level of interest in a specific investment. Stock tickers show these ticks automatically, along with other pertinent information such as trading volume.

As a result of the high volume of stocks that are trading simultaneously, the stock ticker only displays a select few of the companies' shares at any given moment. The equities with the most significant price movement during the previous trading session or those trading with the largest volume are often highlighted on the stock ticker.


There is a good chance that you have seen a stock ticker moving across the screen at the bottom of several financial news networks on television. The ticker provides current information for certain stocks, such as the ticker symbol, the quantity traded, the price, a green "up" arrow if the price is higher than the previous day's closing value, and a red "down" arrow if the price is lower.

If you have an interest in stocks, you should think about opening a brokerage account so that you have access to investable assets. You can find a list of the best online stock brokers in 2019 on the Investopedia website. If the price does not change, the arrow could be colored grey, or it might be missing entirely. The ticker symbol and the net price change often appear in a color-coded format, with green representing an increase in price and red representing a price decrease.

Where It All Began With the Stock Ticker

Edward Calahan, a worker at the American Telegraph Company at the time, is credited with developing the very first telegraphic ticker tape in 1867. Just four years after Calahan's patent was issued, Thomas Edison improved upon it and filed for a patent. The flow of information was facilitated by devices that printed mechanical tickers on paper. This made the process more efficient. As a result of technological advances, the broadcast of information grew much more rapidly and occurred in a very close to real-time.

Although the ticker tape machines launched in 1930 and 1964 were twice as rapid as their forerunners, there was still a delay of around 15 to 20 minutes between the time of a transaction and the time that it was recorded using these machines. A real-time electronic ticker didn't debut until 1996, when it was first introduced. You may get these up-to-the-minute transaction figures—specifically price and volume—on websites, as well as on television news programs and financial wires today.

The Functioning Of a Ticker Symbol

The use of a stock ticker is not too complicated. You may get most of the investing information you want by searching on your broker's website or exchange. Most of the time, you will be able to see the company's stock chart, history of dividends and stock splits, and the current ask and bid prices. Daily volume, dividend rate, price-to-earnings ratios, and other pertinent trade statistics are often listed on most brokers' and exchanges' websites.

The Process behind Choosing Symbols

Companies often can choose their ticker depending on whether or not the exchange they list on is already making use of it. If the symbol they wish to employ is available for use, then they are free to do so. If this is not the case, the exchange will inquire about alternative possible ticker symbols. The ticker "COIN" is associated with the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, which is listed on the NASDAQ, and the ticker "WORK" is associated with Slack Technologies, a workplace chat network. "BOOM" is the ticker symbol used by Dynamic Materials Corporation, a corporation that works with metal. Similarly, the ticker symbols for certain exchange-traded funds are rather imaginative. For example, the ticker symbol for trading Procure Space ETF is "UFO."

Implementation of Ticker Symbols

When it comes to purchasing or selling shares, having knowledge of a company's ticker symbol is very necessary. If one trader talks to another about an up-and-coming stock, and the second trader enters the incorrect ticker symbol while making a trade, the first trader will end up with the incorrect asset. That might turn out to be a very expensive error. Traders may monitor stock prices using software or set up watch lists using tickers that follow stock prices—because of this, locating transactions is not too difficult since tickers may be categorized in ways that make it easier for you to keep track of your various assets.


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