You can invest in the stock market in two ways: stocks and bonds. Bonds allow you to invest in a company through debt, while stocks allow you to invest in a company with stocks. The number of shares you can purchase or own of a particular company depends on the dollar amount invested and the current market value of the stock.
Determine the total amount of the investment. This is the dollar amount of the amount you invested in the company. You can usually find this on your account statement.
Determine the current value of the stock in the market. You can look this up on your favorite investment research site. Yahoo! Finance is the most most popular investment research site on the web according to Alexa.com. Input the ticker symbol or name of the company and you will get a quote for the value of one share in the market.
Divide the total value of your investment in the company by the current value of the stock. This is the number of shares you own of the stock.
Walk through an example. If you own $500 worth of stock and the current share price of the stock is $50 then you own 100 shares of stock ($500/$50).
Working as a full-time freelance writer/editor for the past two years, Bradley James Bryant has over 1500 publications on eHow, LIVESTRONG.com and other sites. She has worked for JPMorganChase, SunTrust Investment Bank, Intel Corporation and Harvard University. Bryant has a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in finance from Florida A&M University.