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Private investors

Glossary of terms

From A to Z, understand investment jargon with our glossary of terms


NASDAQ is a global electronic marketplace for buying and selling securities, as well as the benchmark index for US technology stocks. The term NASDAQ is also used to refer to the NASDAQ Composite, an index of more than 3,000 stocks listed on the NASDAQ exchange that includes the world’s largest technology and biotech giants such as Apple, Google and Microsoft.

‘Net asset value (NAV)’

Net asset value is the total value of a company or fund, measured by taking the total value of its assets, less its liabilities. The net asset value per unit or share, is calculated by dividing the resulting number by the number of units or shares in issue. This term is used to describe the underlying value of a fund's units or shares.

‘Net exposure’

Net exposure, also referred to as 'net market exposure', is a fund's long exposure less its short exposure. Net exposure is a measure of the extent to which a fund’s portfolio is exposed to market fluctuations. The fund manager will adjust the net exposure in accordance with his or her investment outlook – bullish, bearish or neutral. A fund has a net long exposure if the percentage amount invested in long positions exceeds the percentage amount invested in short positions, and has a net short position if short positions exceed long positions. For example, a manager who has an 90% long exposure and 50% short exposure, has a net market exposure of 40%, and a gross exposure of 140%.

‘Net gearing’

Net gearing is a measure of a company's level of long-term debt (or borrowing) compared to its equity capital, usually expressed as a percentage.

‘Nominee company’

A nominee company is a firm into whose name shares/stocks or other assets are transferred in order to facilitate transactions, while leaving the customer as the actual owner. A 'nominee account' is a type of account in which a stockbroker holds shares belonging to clients, making buying and selling those shares easier.

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