Our comprehensive glossary explains many of the terms commonly used in the international markets.

Daily range

The difference between the high price and the low price during one trading day.

Day order (DO)

An order that is valid until the end of the business day. If it has not been filled before this, it is cancelled. For Forex, the end of the day is 22:00 GMT on the day that you place the order. For Stocks, the end of the day is determined by the specific exchange on which it is traded.

Day's move

The extent to which a share moves during the course of the trading day on the Stock exchange.


Money raised by a company through loans. Holders of debentures, which are transferable, are creditors of the company with specific rights as to repayment of capital and interest. Interest must be paid regularly, whether or not there are sufficient profits: and if interest is not paid the debenture holders enforce their rights by obtaining judgement against the company or placing it in liquidation.

Debenture, convertible redeemable

Debenture embodying the right to convert, within a specified time, all or a portion of the holding into ordinary shares at a stipulated price.

Debt/Equity Ratio

The ratio of shareholders' equity in the company (share capital and reserves) to company borrowing of the company. The company has two primary sources of capital: - shareholders equity (consisting of the money raised when the shares they hold were issued, plus any profits which have not been distributed as dividends); and money obtained in the form of loans from banks and other lending institutions. The Debt/Equity ratio shows who owns what in the business.


A decrease in the value of an instrument.

Deferred shares

Special category of share where the payment of dividends is deferred (a) for a fixed period or (b) until total dividends on ordinary shares reach a certain amount. (Such shares are issued by a company wanting to raise additional capital for a project that may not become revenue producing for some time.)


The opposite of inflation. A period where the purchasing power of money increases in terms of a basket of goods and services.

Delivery date

The date on which delivery of the underlying goods of a Futures contract will take place. For speculative investing in Futures, the contract future position must be closed on or before this date.

Delivery versus Payment

The good delivery of securities in exchange for the simultaneous, final and irrevocable payment of money.


A measure indicating the sensitivity of an option's price to price movement in the underlying security. Call options have positive deltas while put options have negative deltas.


Buying interest for a stock at a given price.


The elimination of certificates or documents of title which represent ownership of securities, so that securities exist only as electronic records.


A decrease in the value of an instrument.


A contract whose value is dependent on the performance of some underlying asset or market indicator.

Descending Trend Channel

The area between the two parallel downsloping trendlines comprising of the basic down trendline sloping across the reaction peaks of a decline and the parallel downsloping trendline sloping across the lows of the decline.

Descending triangle

A sideways price pattern between two converging trendlines in which the upper trendline is descending while the lower line is flat. This is generally a bearish pattern.

Direct Market Access (DMA)

Direct participation in the order book maintained by an exchange. The order book contains orders to buy and sell a security, and is used to establish the current market Bid/Ask price.


Amount by which a newly listed security is quoted below the offer price (opposite to premium). A share can also be said to stand at a discount to net asset value when the market price is lower than the balance sheet value per share.

Discretionary account

An account opened with a stockbroker where the stockbroker may trade on the client's behalf without consulting him. The opposite of a non-discretionary account.

Distributable reserves

An item on the balance sheet, which appears on the Capital Employed (or liabilities) side. These are reserves, which may be distributed to shareholders in the form of dividends because they have been built up out of the profits of the company.


The period when farsighted investors senses that the market has outrun its fundamentals and begin to unload their holdings at an increased pace. Trading volume is still high, but diminishes on rallies.


When new highs (or lows) in one indicator are not realized in another comparable indicator.


Spreading of a share portfolio over a variety of companies operating in different fields. The opposite to putting all one's eggs in one basket. This is to lower the risk of a portfolio.


Payment made to shareholders out of a company's profits after taxation..

Dividend cover on preference shares

Earnings less tax and the interest of minority shareholders divided by the annual cost of dividends on preference shares. (This shows the degree of security of the preference dividends and also gives an indication of the company's gearing.)

Dividend Equalisation Reserve

A distributable reserve, which is specifically set up to ensure that dividends remain stable despite, changes in earnings. If a company normally pays a dividend of 10 cents per share, the directors might establish a dividend equalisation reserve so that this dividend level is protected against unprofitable years.

Dividend per Share (DPS)

A company's ordinary dividend divided by the number of ordinary shares in issue, usually expressed as a number of cents per share.

Dividend Yield (DY)

Dividends per share expressed as a percentage of the current market price. For example, if a company pays a dividend of USD10 000 and it has 10 000 ordinary shares in issue (sold to the public) then the dividend per share will be 100 cents. If the current market price is 2 000 cents per share, then the dividend yield will be 5%. This shows that if you bought the share at its current price, and it continued to pay the same dividend you would receive a 5% return per annum.

Double bottom

A reversal chart pattern displaying two prominent troughs.

Double top

A reversal chart pattern displaying two prominent peaks.

Dow Jones Index

Various indices are compiled daily of the prices of securities on the New York Stock Exchange. The Industrial Average measures changes in the unweighted arithmetical average of thirty leading industrial shares. There are similar indices for Utilities, Transportation, composite and Bond Averages.

Dow Jones Industrial Average

A price-weighted average of 30 blue chip stocks published by Dow Jones & Co. Because it is price-weighted, stocks with the highest prices will have the most influence and those with the lowest, the least influence.

Dow Jones Transportation Average

An index consisting of 20 stocks in the transportation business. Originally the index only included railroads; now airlines and trucking companies are included. According to the Dow Theory, a new major high in the DJIA should be confirmed by a new major high in this index before it is considered a reliable signal.

Dow Theory

One of the oldest and most highly regarded technical theories. A Dow Theory buy signal is given when the Dow Industrial and Dow Transportation averages close above a prior rally peak. A sell signal is given when both averages close below a prior reaction low.


A downward movement of one tick or more in the price quote. Many stock exchanges have an uptick rule that states that a stock can only be sold if the stock price has ticked higher than the last price at which a transaction has taken place.