For those tackling their finances in the coming year, learning how to invest is but one way to manage your money. But for financial first timers, the sheer amount of investment abbreviations can be off-putting.

With this in mind, the financial experts at utilized online analytics tool Google AdWords to establish the top ten most searched for investment abbreviations and their meanings.

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The Results: 

Rank Investment Abbreviations US Average Annual Search Volumes
1 ETF 114,160
2 DFM 26,830
3 IRR 23,840
4 NAV 23,170
5 AUM 13,880
6 BPS 11,200
7 APR 10,330
8 EBITDA 8,220
9 P&L 3,100
10 EPS 2,930


The Definitions of the US’ Most Searched Financial Abbreviations:

  1. ETF (114,160 searches) ‘Exchange Traded Funds’ – A type of investment fund that can be traded via a stock exchange
  2. DFM (26,830 searches) ‘Discretionary Fund Manager(ment)’ – A form of professional investing where investments are made on behalf of clients through a range of securities
  3. IRR (23,840 searches) ‘Internal Rate of Return’ – An analysis metric used to estimate the profitability of investments
  4. NAV (23,170 searches) ‘Net Asset Value’ – The value of an entity’s assets after the value of its liabilities have been deducted
  5. AUM (13,880 searches) ‘Assets Under Management’ – A measurement of the total market value of all assets an individual or institution owns/controls
  6. BPS (11,200 searches) ‘Bespoke Portfolio Service’ – A tailored investment plan or service which is personalized for an individual’s specific investment and financial needs
  7. APR (10,330 searches) ‘Annual Percentage Rate’ – Used for comparison of credit/store cards and loans, it is a percent of the amount you borrow that you will pay back as interest
  8. EBITDA (8,220 searches) ‘Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization’ – A measure of a company’s overall financial performance, including earnings, tax and interest figures
  9. P&L (3,100 searches) ‘Profit and Loss’ – A financial statement documenting the total income and expenses over a given time
  10. EPS (2,930 searches) ‘Earnings Per Share’ – The proportion of profit a company has per share of common stock

Salman Haqqi, personal finance expert at, commented on the findings:

Understanding financial terms is of the utmost importance when navigating investments that will undoubtedly involve many documents and contracts. Americans’ searches show a desire to expand their knowledge and get to grips with some of the more complex financial terminology, which will allow them to capitalize on investment opportunities.