STANDARD & POOR'S DEPOSITORY RECEIPTS (SPIDERS)
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a term derived from the abbreviation SPDR, for Standard & Poor's
A spider is a share in a unit investment trust that owns stock in
all of the companies that make up the Standard & Poor's 500 (S&P 500),
an index of 500 publicly traded industrial, financial, utility, and
transportation stocks. The S&P 500 is often used as a performance indicator
for the entire market, since it comprises a large percentage of the total value
of U.S. equities. Spiders allow the investor to own a stake in 500 of the
largest companies in the United States with just one transaction. They are
actively traded on the American Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol
Spiders closely track the performance of the S&P 500, so that
when the index goes up, the value of spiders also increases. In addition to
regular SPDRs, you can also buy shares in MidCap SPDRs and Select Sector SPDRs,
which function in the same way for selected companies in the S&P 500.
SPDRs, for instance, are based on the common stocks that make up the S&P
MidCap 400 Index, which comprises 400 medium-sized U.S. companies.
Select Sector SPDRs offer nine different investment
opportunities in different sectors of the economy. These Select Sector SPDRs
provide you with the opportunity to own shares of various companies that
participate in the same sector. The nine sectors offered are listed below with
their ticker symbols:
|Basic Industries Sector
|Consumer Services Sector
|Consumer Staples Sector
All of the companies in each of these sectors are also present in the S&P 500. All of these spiders are
actively traded on the American Stock Exchange.
While Spiders track the S&P 500, DIAMONDS emulate the
Dow Jones Industrial Average. Keep reading to learn more about this relatively
new financial product.