How to Get Stock Market Data Into Excel

Investors are often overwhelmed with investment data. Exporting this information into Excel is a good way to put the data into a format that allows for more analysis. Exporting the data into Excel can seem overwhelming, but both Microsoft and multiple financial websites make the process relatively easy to accomplish.

Installing Smart Tags

Microsoft Excel's smart tags allow users to import stock market data into spreadsheets. Using Excel version 2007 you must turn on smart tags by clicking on the Microsoft Office Button Button image, and then clicking Excel Options. Next click Proofing and then AutoCorrect Options. Within the AutoCorrect dialog box, click the tab Smart Tags. Check the box Label that selects the data to use as smart tags. After clicking OK twice the feature is turned on. Now Excel will recognize U.S. financial symbols.

Using Smart Tags

Microsoft Excel with smart tags turned on is a powerful tool. A user must type in the public company's symbol in capital letters. Once the stock symbols are in cells you can position the cursor over a cell. Click on a purple triangle on the lower right corner of the cell and then the option Smart Tag Actions. The option "Insert refreshable stock price" allows you retrieve updated stock prices for the company represented by the symbol.

Google Finance Option

Google's finance website, www.google/finance, allows users to export historical stock market data for many securities. End-of-day prices, the high and low prices for the past year and volume for the past year can be quickly downloaded. Start by typing in a stock symbol on the search page. Within the summary page of the company there is a Historical Prices hyperlink on the left side of the page. Clicking on this link produces historical end-of-day prices for the stock. Click on the hyperlink Export and then "Download to spreadsheet." This downloads the data to Excel.

Warning

Users should understand that though it is easy to export stock market data into Excel, the information is not in real time. For example, the Wall Street Journal's stock quotes reflect a fifteen-minute delay. Therefore, an investor should be aware these quotes aren't current prices. In addition, information on foreign stock markets is not always available. Other resources such as the Financial Times or the Wall Street Journal may present a wider universe of foreign-stock information, but these sites often require users to buy a subscription to access and download this information.

About the Author

Kevin O'Flynn began writing in 2008 with a background in private equity. He has written for MilitarySpot.com and lived and worked in the United Kingdom and Japan. O'Flynn holds a Master of Business Administration from Case Western Reserve University.

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