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So, what was the closing price?

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Three men at stock quotations kiosk in stock exchange, c1908

In Business we get a lot of questions about historical stock prices.  While there are a number of subscription databases that do have deep historical coverage of daily stock price data, they often aren’t widely accessible. Since most people who are asking the question often have limited avenues for research, I prefer to direct researchers to sources they have a better chance of accessing.

The first source is the Daily Stock Price Record from Standard & Poor’s.  Historically, this came out in print and microfiche,  but a few years ago the data became available to subscribers though their online product. There are three separate sets – each covering a different exchange. The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and American Stock Exchange (AMEX) sets began in 1962,  while the coverage for the  NASDAQ set began in 1968.  Unfortunately, these titles ceased publication in 2011 and aren’t in every library.  However,  there is another good research option.

Daily newspapers are a go-to source for a lot of business research.  Most big-city daily newspapers commonly printed closing stock prices for the big three exchanges.  Often local library systems have some access to a historical daily newspaper like the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, etc.,  either though a historical newspaper database with digitized newspapers or microfiche set.  Thus, historical newspapers can be a great resource for many researchers.

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