Giant surviving depressions, two World wars and Black Monday: Dow Jones (1896)

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Sunday, 8 October 2017

1896 -

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is a stock market index named after its founders Charles Dow and Edward Jones. The average was first calculated in 1896. Initially it showed the index of 12 industries from the USA. Nowadays it shows how 30 large publicly owned companies based in the USA traded during a standard trading session in the stock market. From the original industries only General Electric remains on the index.

The Dow Jones might be the best known index in the world, it’s also a controversial one. It’s a price-weighted index, which means it uses the price per share for each stock included and divides the sum by a common divisor, usually the total number of stocks in the index. Charles Dow wanted to reflect the average price of stocks in the marketplace. Although the Dow is compiled to assess the performance of the industrial sector in the US economy, the performance of the index is also influenced by political events such as war and terrorism, as well as natural disasters that potentially lead to economic damage.

360 trivial fact
The biggest decline in the history of the Dow Jones had to do with the First World War. As a result of this war, the index was closed for a few months. This exceptional situation has only taken place after the attacks on the WTC in 2001, when trade in the Dow Jones stopped four days.


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