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The S&P/ASX 200 index (also known as the XJO) is the main benchmark for the Australian equity market (replacing the venerable All Ords as the industry standard). The index is made up of 200 of the top stocks, which boast a total value of around $1.1 billion (end of March 2010).
Dow Jones often refers to the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which was one of the first stock indices and is one of the most commonly referred to barometers of equity performance in the United States. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, not to be confused with the Dow Jones Transportation index (which was the first index), is often called, "the Dow" or "DJIA," and consists of thirty stocks which traditionally were industrial-based. But in recent years as the US economy has become more consumer-oriented, the index has seen a change in composition that no longer has much to do with direct industrial investment.
The EUSTX50’s underlying instrument is the Euro Stoxx 50 Future. The Euro Stoxx 50 is an index of European listed shares designed by Stoxx Ltd, an index provider owned by Deutsche Börse and SIX Group and contains the largest companies in Europe (i.e. Allianz, Deutsche Bank, Inditex, Repsol, Unilever).
The CAC 40 (ticker: FRA40) is the benchmark index for the stock market in France. This index represents the top 40 stocks in the Euronext Paris stock market previously called "Bourse de Paris"; the total market capitalization of this index in 2015 was €1.03 Trillion. The Euronext trading hours begin at 9 a.m. and run to 5:35 p.m. CET for the fixing, Monday-Friday. This index was created back in December of 1987 and it started with a base value of 1,000. This index is of much help to investors that want to gain a perspective on how France’s stock market is performing and the economic implications that come along with the performance of this index. France represents one fifth of the total economy of Europe, therefore, it is of great importance to investors to follow the behavior of the French index in order to gain insight of where the European economy is heading. CAC 40 represents stocks from a broad range of sectors, with a total representation of 35 sectors. The sectors in this index range from the tires sector, automobiles, chemicals, cyber security, steel, aerospace, and insurance just to name a few. The CAC 40 is the French equivalent of the DAX 30. The sectors that have the most effect in the index are the pharmaceutical sector with a 10% of the total weight of the index, Banking 10%, and Oil equipment and services with a 9%.
The UK Financial Times Stock Exchange 100, more commonly known as the FTSE 100 or 'Footsie', is an index of share prices of the largest 100 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) by market capitalization. The index was launched on January 3, 1984 at a base value of 1000, and the index level is calculated in real-time. The FTSE 100 represents approximately 81% of the entire market capitalization of the LSE, and even though it doesn't encompass the whole market, it is widely viewed as the best indicator of the heath of UK stocks. In recent years, however, given the uptick in international companies counted in the FTSE 100, this particular market index is no longer viewed as the best health indicator of the UK economy - that goes to the FTSE 250, which has a smaller proportion of multinationals among its constituents.
The German stock index DAX 40 (GER30) was introduced under "DAX" on July, 1st in 1988 by the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. It consists of the 30 largest companies listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange based on the market capitalization and liquidity. The trading hours for the Frankfurt Stock Exchange take place from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. CET. The DAX30 is usually reported as a performance index, which means that the dividends of the companies are reinvested. In a price index the corporate distributions remains disregarded (this can be seen e.g. in EUROSTOXX50). If a company wants to be included in the DAX, it must be listed in the Prime Standard, it has to be traded continuously in Xetra and have at least a free float of 10 %. Additionally, the company must have a registered office in Germany or the main focus of its traded volume in shares is in Frankfurt and the company has a seat in the EU. Based on market capitalization, the five biggest German companies listed in the DAX 30 are Bayer (BAYN), Daimler (DAI), Siemens (SIE), Allianz (ALV) and BASF (BAS). The development in the DAX is often seen as an indicator for the development of the German economy. As a result, the DAX can be seen as a proxy for European economic health since the German economy accounts for almost one third of the total value of the Eurozone economy. The DAX 30s counterparts in Europe are the CAC 40 in France and the FTSE 100 in Britain.
A market capitalization-weighted index of 50 of the largest companies that trade on the Hong Kong Exchange. The Hang Seng Index is maintained by a subsidiary of Hang Seng Bank, and has been published since 1969. The index aims to capture the leadership of the Hong Kong exchange, and covers approximately 65% of its total market capitalization. The Hang Seng members are also classified into one of four sub-indexes based on the main lines of business including commerce and industry, finance, utilities and properties.
The Nikkei 225 (JPN225), commonly referred to as "The Nikkei" is a Japanese stock market index based on the market capitalization of the top 225 companies traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE). This is a price-weighted index based on the Yen, and the value has been calculated daily by the Nihon Keizai Shimbun (Nikkei) newspaper since the Index's inception in 1950. The Nikkei 225 index got its start on September 7, 1950 and was retroactively calculated back to May 16, 1949. Nikkei 225 Futures Contracts got their start on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) in 1986 and then began trading in the United States when they debuted on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) in 1990. The Nikkei is the most widely quoted index when referring to Japanese equities, followed by the Topix which seeks to track all 1,669 companies listed on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE).
The NASDAQ-100 is an index that is constituted by 100 of the largest companies listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange, which is the second largest in the world only after the New York Stock Exchange by market capitalization. The companies that are listed in this index range from a variety of industries like Technology, Telecommunications, Biotechnology, Media, and Services. The NASDAQ-100 was first calculated in January 31 of 1985 by NASDAQ and it is a modified capitalization-weighted index. This index has been of good reference to investors that want to know how the stock market is performing without financial services companies, this given that the index excludes financial companies.
Standard and Poor's 500 Index is a capitalization-weighted index of 500 stocks. The index is designed to measure performance of the broad domestic economy through changes in the aggregate market value of 500 stocks representing all major industries. The index was developed with a base level of 10 for the 1941-43 base period.