A stock symbol is a unique abbreviation that identifies publicly-traded companies on a stock exchange. Upon going public, companies select a unique collection of series of letters or numbers that differentiates them from other companies on that exchange. Stock symbols are also known as ticker symbols.
Companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) tend to have four or fewer characters while the Nasdaq stock exchange allows up to five letters. For instance, a stock symbol for Apple stock is AAPL, for Tesla stock is TSLA, or AMZN for Amazon shares.
In some cases, additional characters are added for different share classes or to indicate certain trading restrictions.
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