- The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is a widely-watched benchmark index in the U.S. for blue-chip stocks.
- The DJIA is a price-weighted index that tracks 30 large, publicly-owned companies trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the Nasdaq.
- The index was created by Charles Dow in 1896 to serve as a proxy for the broader U.S. economy.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), also known as the Dow 30, is a stock market index that tracks 30 large, publicly-owned blue-chip companies trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones is named after Charles Dow, who created the index in 1896 along with his business partner Edward Jones.
The DJIA is the second oldest U.S. market index; the first was the Dow Jones Transportation Average (DJTA). The DJIA was designed to serve as a proxy for the health of the broader U.S. economy. Often referred to simply as “the Dow,” the DJIA is one of the most-watched stock market indexes in the world. While the Dow includes a range of companies, all can be described as blue-chip companies with consistently stable earnings.
When the index initially launched in 1896, it included only 12 companies. Those companies were primarily in the industrial sector, including the railroads, cotton, gas, sugar, tobacco, and oil.