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Standard & Poor's

STANDARD & POOR'S

STANDARD & POOR'S (S&P) was created by the 1941 merger and incorporation of Poor's, a financial publishing company founded by Henry Varnum Poor in 1867, and Standard Statistics Bureau, a publisher of daily indexes for ninety stocks that its founder, Luther Lee Blake, had begun tracking in 1906. Several government agencies began using the stock index in the late 1950s, particularly after computers enabled the firm to calculate 500 companies' stock on a real-time basis. The company introduced the S&P 500, a capitalization-weighted index of 500 of the largest publicly traded companies in the United States, on 4 March 1957. S&P publishes a number of investment advisories, compendia of statistical information, and financial directories.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Blake, Rich. "The Rise of the S&P 500." Institutional Investor, May 2002.

Downes, John, Elliot Goodman, and Jordan Elliot Goodman. Dictionary of Finance and Investment Terms. 4th ed. New York: Barron's, 2001.

Mary LawrenceWathen

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Standard & Poor's

STANDARD & POOR'S


Standard & Poor's Corporation (S&P) is the largest statistical service organization in the United States. It specializes in the securities field and includes a range of corporate investments, like stocks, bonds, mortgages, notes, scrip, rights, options, etc. Standard & Poor's Corporation (a division of the McGraw-Hill Companies in the 1990s) is the result of a merger between the Standard Statistics Company and Poor's Publishing Company. The Standard & Poor's Corporation, known by its trademarks "Standard & Poor's," "S&P," and "S&P 500, " produces for investors useful collections of periodic reference publications containing financial statistics. S&P services include a weekly investment advisory service, a stock guide, a bond guide, industry surveys, and corporation records, as well as many other specifically targeted economic marketplace service sector guides. S&P has for many years produced its famous S&P 500 Corporate Stock Index in which 500 important companies, producing various large company or "blue chip" commodities, are averaged together with weights representing their importance in the total indexed selling value of their stocks. This index represents an aggregate view of the primary marketplace in the United States and illustrates statistical trends in both growth and weakness. The Index presents an ongoing series of statistical "snapshots" of the market to aid investors. The only real competitor of S&P as a leading publisher of investment data is Moody's Investor Service, Inc.

See also: Stock Market

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