The Dow Jones Industrial Average (also known as the DJ30 or just Dow) is a price-weighted stock market index, created by Wall Street Journal Editor, Charles Dow. The industrial average is the oldest stock index in the world and was first calculated on May 26, 1896.
The Dow remains one of the most closely monitored and regularly cited stock indexes as a measure of stock market performance. When we hear news reports claiming the ‘market is up (or down)’ for the day, it is often referring to the movement of the Dow.
The Dow measures the performance of 30 large, publicly-owned companies in the US stemming from a wide array of industry sectors, ranging from healthcare to financial services among others. The 30 stocks in the Dow can dictate the movement of the entire stock market as it is such a strong indicator of the US economy and investor sentiment towards equities.