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Shares The stock of a corporation is partitioned into shares, the total of which are stated at the time of business formation. Additional shares may subsequently be authorized by the existing shareholders and issued by the company. In some jurisdictions, each share of stock has a certain declared par value, which is a nominal accounting value used to represent the equity on the balance sheet of the corporation. In other jurisdictions, however, shares of stock may be issued without associated par value.

Shares represent a fraction of ownership in a business. A business may declare different types (classes) of shares, each having distinctive ownership rules, privileges, or share values. Ownership of shares may be documented by issuance of a stock certificate. A stock certificate is a legal document that specifies the amount of shares owned by the shareholder, and other specifics of the shares, such as the par value, if any, or the class of the shares.

In the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, South Africa, and Australia, stock can also refer to completely different financial instruments such as government bonds or, less commonly, to all kinds of marketable securities.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>


Stock sections
Intro  Shares  Types of stock  Stock derivatives  History  Shareholder  Application  Trading  See also  References  External links  

Shares
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