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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Dollars or points?

I got positive feedback on the blog post "Enough" and thought I would expand on a common word choice mistake made by students and the Japanese financial media.

It's this: how do you measure the Dow Jones average?

Japanese people seem to think that the Dow Jones is measured in dollars. So for example, they might say, "The Dow was up 50 dollars today."

Wrong. The Dow Jones is measured in POINTS, not dollars. Here's an explanation for those of you who are interested.

The point is the same one I made in Enough: words (in this case numbers) don't always mean what you think they mean. E-J and J-E translation is very difficult so please make sure to understand the meanings of the words you use.