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Financial dictionary terms starting with “w”
A W-2 form is a tax form required from employers that reports wages paid and taxes withheld to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), local state tax authorities and the Social Security Administration. See More.
A W-4 form is a standard IRS form an employee uses to report federal taxability status to an employer. See More.
The W-8 form is a standard IRS form that exempts non-U.S. citizens from specific federal income taxes. See More.
The W-9 form is a standard IRS form that certifies an individual's Social Security number and taxpayer identification number. See More.
A W-shaped recovery refers to two consecutive cycles of economic decline and growth that graphically resemble the letter "W." See More.
A wage assignment refers to a forced payment of a financial obligation via automatic withholding from an employee's pay. See More.
A wage earner plan, subsequently known as Chapter 13, is a bankruptcy protection scheme that allows income earners to satisfy outstanding debts -- in whole or in part -- within a specific time frame. See More.
Also called garnishment, a wage execution is a process under which money owed or paid to a borrower is given to a creditor instead. See More.
Wage expense is the total compensation a company pays its employees during a particular accounting period. See More.
A wage garnishment is an obligatory payment of a debt where a portion of an employee's paycheck is automatically withheld to pay the debt. See More.
Also called cost-push inflation, a wage-price spiral is an economic term that describes how prices increase when wages increase. See More.
Also called cost-push inflation or a wage-price spiral, wage-push inflation is an economic term that describes how prices increase when wages increase. See More.
The waiting period refers to the time period between a company filing a registration statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the SEC declaring that statement to be effective. This is also referred to as the "quiet perio See More.
A waiver is a party's voluntary renunciation of rights in a contractual arrangement. See More.
Under a waiver of demand, a payee assumes responsibility for a check or bank draft that he or she endorses. See More.
A waiver of exemption is a clause in a contract that allows a creditor to seize property that state laws may exempt from seizure. See More.
A waiver of notice is an agreement that allows people to conduct certain legal procedures without giving formal notification that he or she is going to do so. See More.
A waiver of premium rider is language in an insurance policy that allows the insured to stop making premium payments if he or she becomes ill or disabled. See More.
A waiver of subrogation prevents an insurer from seeking payments from third parties that cause losses to the person or business it is insuring. See More.
Also called a closed-end lease, a walk-away lease is usually a kind of car lease that allows the lessee to return the car at the end of a lease period. See More.
In the finance world, a wall of worry is an increasing amount of negative information about a security or about the market. See More.
Wall Street is the name used to describe the place in New York City where much of the United States' financial industry is concentrated. The name "Wall Street" is also used frequently used to describe the financial services industry, gene See More.
The Walmart Effect is a book by Charles Fishman that examines how small businesses behave after a Walmart opens in their markets. It is also a phrase used to describe situations in which small businesses close when larger national retailers enter a m See More.
The Walmart effect refers to the economic impact of a large discount retailer on a local market. See More.
Walras's law is the concept that a surplus in one market indicates the presence of a shortage in another. See More.
In a Walrasian market, buy and sell orders are grouped together and then executed at specific times, rather than executed one by one continuously. See More.
A war chest is the cash set aside to deal with unexpected changes in a business environment or to take advantage of a sudden opportunity. See More.
A war economy centers on producing goods and services that support war efforts. See More.
Warehouse financing occurs when a lender lends to a borrower who uses inventory as collateral. See More.
Warehouse lending is credit provided to a mortgage lender to fund mortgages until the lender sells them in the secondary market. See More.
A warehouse receipt is a piece of paper promising that a specific quantity and quality of a particular asset is in a given location. See More.
Warehousing is the process of accumulating shares in a company for the purpose of eventually acquiring the firm. See More.
A warm card is a bank card that allows the user to make one kind of transaction but not another. See More.
A warning bulletin is a list of credit cards that are reported stolen, canceled or compromised in some way. See More.
Warrants are securities that give the holder the right, but not the obligation, to buy a certain number of securities (usually the issuer's common stock) at a certain price before a certain time. Warrants are not the same as call options or stock pur See More.
A warrant premium is the percentage difference between the market price of a security and the price an investor pays for that security when buying and exercising a warrant. The formula for the warrant premium is: Warrant Premium = 100 x [(Warrant P See More.
A warranty is a guarantee, usually written, that a product or service works as expected. See More.
Commonly referred to as "The Oracle of Omaha" because of his Nebraska roots, Warren Buffett is widely regarded as the world's most prominent value investor. See More.
A wash occurs when two actions cancel each other out (such as a gain and an equal loss), effectively creating a break-even situation. See More.
A wash sale occurs when an investor sells a security at a loss but then purchases the same or a substantially similar security within 30 days of the sale. See More.
Wash trading occurs when an investor sells a security at a loss, then purchases the same or a substantially similar security within 30 days of the sale. See More.
A wash-out round is a round of financing that dilutes the original shareholders so much that their voting power is essentially "washed out." See More.
A wasting asset is a property or security that has a limited life and loses value over its life. See More.
A wasting trust holds the assets of qualified plans when the qualified plans are frozen. See More.
A watch list is a list of securities that regulators, brokerages, research firms, or other entities are interested in monitoring. See More.
A water damage clause is the section of an insurance contract that details whether and how much the insurer will pay the insured for damage caused by water. See More.
Watered stock is stock that is issued at a price far higher than the value of the issuer's assets. See More.
A waterfall concept is an insurance strategy whereby a child or grandchild inherits a tax-exempt whole-life insurance policy. See More.
A waterfall payment is a repayment system by which senior lenders receive principal and interest payments from a borrower first, and subordinate lenders receive principal and interest payments after. See More.
In investing, a wave is a pattern found in stock prices, technology, consumer trends or other areas. In technical analysis, the term often refers to Elliot Wave Theory. See More.
A weak dollar is used to describe the United States' currency decreasing in value relative to other currencies. See More.
The random walk theory states that market and securities prices are random and not influenced by past events. The idea is also referred to as weak form efficiency or the weak form efficient-market hypothesis. Princeton economics professor Burton See More.
In futures trading, weak hands are investors who do not intend to take delivery of the underlying asset. In currency trading, weak hands are investors who tend to follow traditional trading rules, thus making their trading predictable. See More.
Weak longs are investors who buy a stock (known as being "long"), but who will sell it at the first sign of a price decline. See More.
Weak shorts are investors who short sell a stock (known as being "short"), but who will buy it back at the first sign of a price increase. See More.
A weak sister is a security, economy or operating unit that performs worse than all the others. See More.
Wealth management is an investment advisory service for high net worth individuals. See More.
A wealth psychologist is a person who helps people cope with the emotional aspects of money. See More.
A wealth tax is based on a person's net worth or the value of his or her assets. See More.
A wedding warrant is a bond provision that requires the holder of a bond to relinquish the bond to the issuer if the holder purchases another bond with similar features from the same company. See More.
The weekend effect is a theory that stock prices rise on Monday and fall on Friday. See More.
Weighted refers to the mathematical practice of adjusting the components of an index to reflect the importance of certain characteristics. See More.
Weighted average refers to the mathematical practice of adjusting the components of an average to reflect the importance of certain characteristics. See More.
Weighted average cost of capital (WACC) is the average rate of return a company expects to compensate all its different investors. The weights are the fraction of each financing source in the company's target capital structure. See More.
Weighted Average Market Capitalization refers to a stock market index in which larger companies (i.e. with higher market capitalization) have more influence on the index's performance. See More.
A Wells Notice is a letter from a regulator such as the Securities and Exchange Commission that warns a financial institution or financial professional that the SEC is beginning an investigation into the institution's or professional's activi See More.
A wet loan is a mortgage in which the borrower gets the funding before all the paperwork is done. See More.
A trader is said to be "whipsawed" when the price of a security suddenly moves in the opposite direction of a trade that he just placed. See More.
A whisper number is an unofficial, unpublished earnings per share (EPS) forecast for a public company. It is not the same as a consensus estimate. See More.
A white knight is a company that acquires another company that is trying to avoid acquisition by a third party. See More.
A wholly owned subsidiary is a subsidiary company whose parent company owns 100% of the company's outstanding common stock. See More.
A wide economic moat is a significant competitive advantage that is extremely difficult to copy or emulate, thereby creating a barrier to entry for competing firms. See More.
Widow and orphan stocks are low-risk securities that pay high dividends. See More.
Wildcat drilling is the process of looking for oil and natural gas wells in non-typical areas. See More.
A will is a legal document that indicates how a person wants his or her estate (money and property) to be distributed after death. Wills must expressly state to whom the will belongs and be signed, dated and include the signatures of at least two wit See More.
Often combined with stochastics to detect overbought and oversold conditions, Williams %R -- or %R for short -- is a momentum indicator developed by Larry Williams. See More.
The Wilshire 5000 Index is considered the "total market index." Designed to track the value of the entire stock market, the index was started in 1974 by Wilshire Associates soon after computers made the daily computation of such a large index See More.
Window dressing is a term that describes the act of making a company's performance, particularly its financial statements, look attractive. See More.
In a brokerage firm, a wire room receives customer orders from brokers, sends the orders to the exchanges, and sends back notices of execution. See More.
A wire transfer is a method of transferring money electronically between two people or institutions. See More.
A withdrawal penalty occurs when a depositor or investor withdraws funds from an account before an agreed-upon withdrawal date for disallowed purposes or in a disallowed manner. See More.
Withholding refers to withholding tax, which is an amount that employers withhold from an employee's paycheck and remit to local and federal taxing authorities on behalf of the employee. See More.
A withholding allowance reduces the amount of income tax an employer withholds from an employee's paycheck. See More.
Withholding tax is an amount that employers withhold from an employee's paycheck and remit to local and federal taxing authorities on behalf of the employee. See More.
Work in process (WIP) refers to a component of a company's inventory that is partially completed. The value of that partially completed inventory is sometimes also called goods in process on the balance sheet (particularly if the company is manufactu See More.
Working capital is money available to a company for day-to-day operations. Simply put, working capital measures a company's liquidity, efficiency, and overall health. Because it includes cash, inventory, accounts receivable, accounts payabl See More.
A working capital loan is a loan used by companies to cover day-to-day operational expenses. See More.
A company's working ratio measures its ability to cover its annual expenses. See More.
The World Bank is an international financial institution dedicated to reducing poverty around the world through capital investment and the facilitation of trade. See More.
The World Trade Organization (WTO) establishes rules of trade among its member nations. To this end, the WTO also handles trade disputes, monitors trade policies, provides technical assistance for developing countries and cooperates with other intern See More.