Ticker symbols identify securities available for trade.

Ticker symbols are a series of letters that represent a security being traded on an exchange. Typically, a symbol is made up of one to five characters and, with each security having its own symbol, makes it easier to distinguish between securities of companies with similar sounding names.

Difference Between NYSE & NASDAQ Ticker Symbols

Before 2007, it was easy to state a difference between New York Stock Exchange & NASDAQ ticker symbols. NYSE symbols consisted of up to three letters, while NASDAQ symbols had four. That is no longer the case. Starting in 2007, a company could choose a symbol with one to four for the NYSE. On the NASDAQ, it is now possible to find stock symbols of three letters. As an example of the change on the NYSE, the symbol for Ares Commercial Real Estate Corp. is ACRE. On the NASDAQ, Analog Devices has the symbol ADI.