Stocks (also called equities) are a type of investment where an investor buys shares (“stock”) sold by a corporation. A share of stock represents partial ownership of the company and the investor becomes a shareholder in the company. As a partial owner of the company, the investor has a claim to the earnings and assets of the company (such as receiving dividends paid by the company). For example, if an investor owns 15 shares of a company that has 100 total shares, the investor owns 15% of the company.