A stock, also known as a share or equity, represents ownership in a publicly traded company. When you purchase a stock, you become a shareholder and have a claim on the company's assets and earnings. Stocks are typically bought and sold on stock exchanges, such as the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) or NASDAQ. Shareholders may receive dividends (a portion of the company's profits) and have voting rights in certain company decisions. The price of a stock can fluctuate based on various factors, including company performance, market conditions, and investor sentiment.
In summary, a stock is a financial instrument that represents ownership in a company and provides investors with potential returns through dividends and capital appreciation.