The Value of Market Data for Retail Investors

Information is the lifeblood of markets—especially in the digital era.

Huge advances in market data powered by Nasdaq have fueled fierce competition that benefits the investing public and provides retail investors access to state-of-the-art analytical tools and market data at little to no cost.

Market Data in Context

Market data is the curation of trillions of individual data points about the buy and sell orders communicated on stock-trading platforms by market participants. Nasdaq products leverage market data to democratize market access, power startups, and drive down costs for investors. Despite the acceleration in market data's value and use—it remains remarkably and persistently affordable.

Market Data Helps Retail Investors

Data on U.S. stock exchanges, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and other investment products helps U.S. households:

Obtain the guaranteed best price execution on every trade

Access investments efficiently to build a nest egg for retirement and other needs

Make smarter decisions to limit risk of losses during market downturns

Retail Investors Access Market Data at a very low cost or for free

Here's six possible ways retail investors can access market data:

Other Retail Investor Costs are a fraction of what they were a decade ago

Innovations powered by data and technology have driven down trading costs and other fees for brokerage accounts, mutual funds, and ETFs to a fraction of what they were less than a decade ago.

Equity mutual fund fees declined 40% between 2000 and 20171
401(k) equity funds expenses down
42%
between 2000 and 20172
ETFs fees declined 38% between 2009 and 20173
U.S. stock average trade commission4 down
40%


  • 1Source: https://www.ici.org/pdf/2018_factbook.pdf [p.119, Figure 6.1]
  • 2Source: https://www.ici.org/pdf/per24-04.pdf [Page 10, Figure 6]
  • 3Source: https://www.ici.org/pdf/2018_factbook.pdf [p.128, Figure 6.8]
  • 4Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/16/online-brokers-lower-trading-fees-theres-another-option-pay-nothing.html