How To Use Yahoo Finance

Most people are familiar with Yahoo as one of the biggest search engines on the internet.  But it also offers a variety of other options including current news stories and financial information.   

To use some parts of Yahoo Finance, you'll need to become a member.  There is no charge to become a member, and it will give you access to much more information than using it as a guest. While it's not necessary, it is a good idea to have some finance or accounting background.

Once you've arrive at Yahoo, click the Finance tab on the left hand side.  On the main Finance page, in the upper right hand corner, there is a tab to sign up.  You will need to choose a username and a password.  Currently, the password requirement is that it be a minimum of 5 characters.  You will also need to fill out your name and any other required information in the appropriate places.  You will also need to provide a security question and answer so that Yahoo can send you your password in case you forget.  Before you finish, you'll need to read the terms and conditions and check the box that you agree to abide by them.   

Once you've become a member, you'll be able to check stock prices, check historical stock prices, check currency rates, research mutual funds and create portfolios.  This is only a partial list, but you can see here that there is quite a variety of options available. 

If you own stock, or maybe you are just interested in the stock market, you can create your own portfolio on Yahoo Finance.  This will allow you to follow specific stocks on a daily basis.  You can input your activity, and it will help you keep track of that.  You can also create more than one portfolio, for example one for your regular account, one for your IRA, and one for your Roth IRA account.  It provides you with several formats that you can choose from.    

Currently, not only can you search for current stock information, but you can research historical stock prices as well.  This may come in handy at tax time.   

You can also find advice and investing ideas as well as a wide range of general financial ideas and help.  Ideas like how to trim the budget, ways to avoid getting laid off, and how to pay for college.  They have links to a variety of financial calculators as well.   Information may come from well known financial experts, and you may also find forums and answers from citizen journalists about things that interest you.  As with any advice, make sure you do your research and don't just rely on someone you don't know hiding behind a blog promoting a stock.     

Yahoo continuously updates their available options.  Exploring Yahoo Finance regularly may help you find an application that can help answer a specific financial need you may have.  There's all kinds of information available, and you may find yourself so interested in what you see that you decide to take it even further with some online finance courses!


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