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Encyclopedia > Common stock

Common stock, also referred to as common shares, are, as the name implies, the most usual and commonly held form of stock in a corporation. The other type of shares that the public can hold in a corporation is known as preferred stock. Common stock that has been re-purchased by the corporation is known as treasury stock and is available for a variety of corporate uses. A stock, also referred to as a share, is commonly a share of ownership in a corporation. ... A corporation is a legal entity (distinct from a natural person) that often has similar rights in law to those of a Civil law systems may refer to corporations as moral persons; they may also go by the name AS (anonymous society) or something similar, depending on language (see below). ... A preferred stock, also known as a preferred share or simply a preferred, is a share of stock carrying additional rights above and beyond those conferred by common stock. ... In finance, a treasury stock or reacquired stock is stock which is bought back by the issuing company. ...


Common stock typically has voting rights in corporate decision matters, though perhaps different rights from preferred stock. In order of priority in a liquidation of a corporation, the owners of common stock are near the last. Dividends paid to the stockholders must be paid to preferred shares before being paid to common stock shareholders. Liquidation, or winding up, refers to a business whose assets are converted to money in order to pay off debt. ...


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