Online broker services offer traders the opportunity to buy and sell a variety of financial instruments, including positions on international indices. A stock market index represents the top shares listed on a particular exchange, and provides a clear indication of the health of a national economy.
A stock exchange brings together entities in need of financing. These include private and public companies, local authorities, the state, and agents with financing capacity such as savers and investors. The market helps entities acquire funds to finance the development, marketing, and distribution of their products or services, whether domestically or internationally.
Whereas some traders choose to invest in individual stocks, others opt to open positions on an index as a whole by trading ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds). This is in order to profit from the price evolution of a large group of the most important companies in a given country. ETFs are generally available only on the larger stock markets such as the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ, however, many investors prefer to identify more targeted opportunities on specific stocks.
Brokers like UFX.com allow you to benefit from advanced trading and charting tools when investing in the French index (the CAC40), the German index (the DAX30), and the Amsterdam Exchange index (the AEX 25).
What is the AEX 25 Index?
The AEX 25, representing the Amsterdam Exchange index, is made up of 25 large Dutch companies, including Royal Dutch Shell, Unilever, ING Group, Philips, and Heineken. Financial stocks account for nearly 30% of this index, Consumer Goods make up more than 20%, followed by Consumer Services, representing almost 15%.
Launched in 1983, the AEX 25 is reviewed quarterly in June, September, and December while a full annual review is conducted in March. During its quarterly review, companies are often removed or added to the index.
The AEX is a market value-weighted (capitalization-weighted) index, which means that its constituent stocks are weighted differently according to the value of each company. This weighting is calculated by multipying the share price by the number of outstanding shares.
When investing in the Dutch stock exchange, traders should not only stay updated on economic news concerning the Netherlands, but also on all European countries. Stock exchanges in Europe are highly correlated and any trading activities between these nations can impact traders’ decisions. For example, in 2000 the Euronext NV was established following a merger between the Paris, Brussels, and Amsterdam stock exchanges.
Trade agreements and the geopolitical environment also play important roles in the price evolution of a stock index, helping traders determine expectations and projections for future growth.