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The performance of a predetermined set of securities, used for comparison purposes. Such sets may be based on published indexes or may be customized to suit an investment strategy.


A standard against which a security's performance is compared. A benchmark is usually an index of securities of the same or similar class. Stocks are usually compared against stocks; bonds against bonds, etc. Another type of benchmark considers securities according to industry: a telecommunications stock may be compared to other telecommunications stocks. Likewise, mid-cap securities may be benchmarked against other mid-cap securities. Some indices, such as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500, are considered to be benchmarks for the wider economy.


A standard by which something is measured. For example, bond yields are generally compared to benchmark yields on U.S. Treasury securities of similar maturity. Mutual fund performance is often compared to changes in the Standard & Poor's 500 Stock Index.


An investment benchmark is a standard against which the performance of an individual security or group of securities is measured.

For example, the average annual performance of a class of securities over time is a benchmark against which current performance of members of that class and the class itself is measured.

When the benchmark is an index tracking a specific segment of the market, the changing value of the index not only measures the strength or weakness of its segment but is the standard against which the performance of individual investments within the segment are measured.

For example, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index (S&P 500) and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) are the most widely followed benchmarks, or indicators, of the US market for large-company stocks and the funds that invest in those stocks.

There are other indexes that serve as benchmarks for both broader and narrower segments of the US equities markets, of international markets, and of other types of investments such as bonds, mutual funds, and commodities.

Individual investors and financial professionals often gauge their market expectations and judge the performance of individual investments or market sectors against the appropriate benchmarks. In a somewhat different way, the changing yield on the 10-year US Treasury bond is considered a benchmark of investor attitudes.

For example, a lower yield is an indication that investors are putting money into bonds, driving up the price, possibly because they expect stock prices to drop. Conversely, a higher yield indicates investors are putting their money elsewhere.

Originally the term benchmark was a surveyor's mark indicating a specific height above sea level.


A permanent reference mark,usually set in concrete or iron and used to establish the elevation above sea level or certain corners in a surveying system. All other measurements in the area should be checked for accuracy relative to the nearest benchmark, preferably against several nearby benchmarks to establish redundancy.

References in periodicals archive ?
Bapco will also be airing a competition on local radio stations, 93.
Under the Plan, representing an estimated $4 billion to $6 billion investment when completed, Bapco will expand the refinery to a higher capacity and will replace the ageing A-B pipeline with a new pipeline that will ensure environmental safety.
Through focus on safety, the environment, clear communication, visible leadership and supply chain management, Bapco continues to deliver superior results.
The technology overhaul helped Bapco cut back on resources needed to engage in time consuming service and maintenance tasks in addition to manual restore operations associated with verifying tape-based data backups.
However, Bapco continues to invest in Quality Management (QM) and Environment Management Standards (EMS) to maintain its ethos for continued excellence.
Bapco will also likely try to re-negotiate premiums for its April to December gasoil term contracts at a higher level than what was negotiated for the first quarter, the sources said.
The achievement represents eight million employee-hours of operation with no injuries requiring a Bapco or contractor employee to miss a working day.
Shaikh Khalifa bin Daij expressed sincere thanks and appreciation to BAPCO for its sponsorship and contributions to the programme, lauding its cooperation with CPISP so as to be able to achieve the set goals.
Prior to his February 2013 appointment as acting chief executive in Bapco, as well as his chairmanship of the board, Almoayyed was deputy chief executive officer at Tatweer Petroleum from 2009 until 2012.
As a homegrown, Bahraini company, Bapco believes in actively contributing to the development of the local community, while reaching out to a wider segment of the society," said Adel Khalil Al Moayyed, chairman of Bapco's board.
Current BAPCo membership includes: AMD, Apple, ARCintuition, Compal, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Lenovo, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Samsung, SanDisk, Seagate, Sony, Toshiba, and VIA Technologies.
MANAMA: Bapco has selected WorleyParsons UK (WP) to provide process technology for the sulphur plant to be installed as part of the Bapco Modernisation Programme (BMP).