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How to invest in the Dow Jones

Here's what you need to know about trading or investing in this US stock index

The Dow Jones is a stock index in the US and is home to some major companies like Apple, Coca-Cola and McDonald's. There are only 30 companies on this index so you could choose to invest in all 30 or you could invest in an index fund that does it for you. Find out how the Dow Jones works and how you can invest in the Dow Jones index in Australia.

Can I invest in the Dow Jones in Australia?

Yes, there are a few ways to trade or invest in the Dow Jones from Australia. You can't buy shares directly in the Dow Jones because it's not a stock, but you can invest in an exchange-traded fund (ETF) or index fund that tracks the performance of the 30 stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average index.

You can also buy shares in the individual companies listed on the Dow Jones index, but this can be an expensive and time-consuming way to invest. To buy shares in US-listed stocks from Australia, you'll need to open an account with a US stock trading platform.

How to trade the Dow Jones index

It's possible to trade the Dow Jones using contracts for difference (CFDs). When you trade CFD indices, you're betting on the future price movements of the index. This means you have the potential to earn a profit regardless of whether the index is rising or falling. This is sometimes called "futures" trading.

As CFD traders typically use leverage, both profits and losses are amplified. For this reason, CFDs are considered to be high-risk and only for experienced investors in Australia. You can find out more about this in our comprehensive guide to CFD trading.

Finder survey: Have Australians of different ages bought overseas stocks?

Response75+ yrs65-74 yrs55-64 yrs45-54 yrs35-44 yrs25-34 yrs18-24 yrs
Australia29.85%23.43%24.69%25.56%23.29%28.11%12.63%
Other5.97%4%1.23%0.56%0.4%1.05%
US2.99%4%7.41%12.22%12.05%9.22%7.37%
NZ1.49%0.57%1.61%1.84%
UK1.49%1.14%3.09%1.11%1.2%1.84%1.05%
China/Hong Kong0.57%0.62%0.56%3.21%1.38%2.11%
Europe (EU)0.57%1.23%2.01%1.38%1.05%
Canada1.23%1.67%1.2%1.38%1.05%
Japan0.62%0.56%2.01%1.84%1.05%
India0.56%0.4%0.92%1.05%
Singapore0.56%1.61%0.92%1.05%
Africa & Middle East1.05%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1145 Australians, December 2023

How to invest in a Dow Jones fund

  1. Choose an index fund or ETF that tracks the Dow. Some index funds track the performance of all 30 Dow stocks, whereas others only track a certain number of stocks or are weighted more towards specific stocks. You should select the fund that best suits your investment goals.
  2. Open a share-trading account. Once you've selected the fund you'd like to buy, you'll need to open a trading account with a broker or platform that offers it. Different brokers have different fee structures, so it's worth researching which platform best suits your needs before investing. You can compare trading platforms below.
  3. Deposit funds. Once you've set up an account, you'll need to deposit funds. Depending on which broker you use, you may need to pay a forex fee when you deposit money.
  4. Buy the index fund. Once your account is set up and funded, you can buy the Dow Jones index fund. You generally pay a small annual fee in order to invest in an index fund or ETF.

How does the Dow Jones work?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), also known as the Dow, is a stock market index that tracks the stock performance of 30 of the largest companies on US stock exchanges. It's not weighted by market capitalisation and does not use a weighted arithmetic mean. It is maintained by S&P Dow Jones Indices and is the second-oldest US market index.

Should I invest in the Dow?

The Dow is an index of 30 of the largest and most successful companies on US stock exchanges. Between 2009 and 2019, the Dow gained over 21,000 points, an increase of around 260%. Historically it has been a sensible investment option, however, in recent years it has been outperformed by the tech-heavy NASDAQ index.

Dow Jones ETFs

To date, there are no Dow Jones ETFs listed in Australia, however, there are a number of ETFs that track the US market. Below are just a few:

  • BetaShares S&P 500 Yield Maximiser Fund (Managed Fund)
  • BetaShares NASDAQ 100 ETF - Currency Hedged
  • iShares S&P 500 ETF
  • BetaShares NASDAQ 100 ETF

Investing in Dow Jones stocks

The alternative way to invest in the Dow Jones is to buy stocks in the listed companies directly. You could choose to buy one share in each of the 30 companies in the Dow or select a few stocks to buy.

However, while this method gives you direct exposure to the companies in the Dow Jones, it's likely to be an expensive way to invest. Many of the stocks in the Dow are worth hundreds of US dollars, so if you wanted to buy at least one stock in each company, you'd be looking at investing significant money.

Depending on which broker or trading platform you use in Australia, you may also be charged for each individual stock you buy, and these trading fees can often wipe out any potential profit you make. In comparison, you only pay a small annual fee when you buy an ETF, but your investment will still be tied to the performance of the Dow.

You can also trade the Dow Jones via derivatives such as futures contracts, which let you predict how the index will perform over a certain period.

DJIA live price

What companies are in the Dow Jones (DJIA)?

CompanyExchangeStock codeIndustry
3MNYSENYSE: MMMConglomerate
American ExpressNYSENYSE: AXPFinancial services
AmgenNYSENYSE: AMGNPharmaceuticals
Apple Inc.NASDAQAAPLInformation technology
BoeingNYSENYSE: BAAerospace and arms
Caterpillar Inc.NYSENYSE: CATConstruction/Mining
Chevron CorporationNYSENYSE: CVXPetroleum industry
Cisco SystemsNASDAQCSCOInformation technology
The Coca-Cola CompanyNYSENYSE: KOFood industry
Dow Inc.NYSENYSE: DOWChemical industry
Goldman SachsNYSENYSE: GSFinancial services
The Home DepotNYSENYSE: HDRetailing
Honeywell International IncNYSENYSE: HONConglomerate
IBMNYSENYSE: IBMInformation technology
IntelNASDAQINTCInformation technology
Johnson & JohnsonNYSENYSE: JNJPharmaceuticals
JPMorgan ChaseNYSENYSE: JPMFinancial services
McDonald'sNYSENYSE: MCDFood industry
Merck & Co.NYSENYSE: MRKPharmaceuticals
MicrosoftNASDAQMSFTInformation technology
NikeNYSENYSE: NKEApparel
Procter & GambleNYSENYSE: PGConsumer
Salesforce.Com IncNYSENYSE: CRMInformation technology
The Travelers CompaniesNYSENYSE: TRVFinancial services
UnitedHealth GroupNYSENYSE: UNHManaged health care
United TechnologiesNYSENYSE: UTXConglomerate
VerizonNYSENYSE: VZTelecommunication
Visa Inc.NYSENYSE: VFinancial services
WalmartNYSENYSE: WMTRetailing
Walgreens Boots AllianceNASDAQWBARetailing
The Walt Disney CompanyNYSENYSE: DISBroadcasting/entertainment

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eToro
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Moomoo Share Trading
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Get 10 free shares + earn 6.8% p.a. on idle cash upon deposit. T&Cs apply.
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Tiger Brokers
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Important: The standard brokerage fee displayed is the trade cost for new customers to purchase $1,000 of either Australian or US shares. Where a platform charges different fees for both US and Australian shares we show the lower of the two. Where both CHESS sponsored and custodian shares are offered, we display the cheapest option.

Disclaimer: General information only. All forms of investments (and in particular, trading CFDs, commodities and forex) carry significant risk, including the risk of losing more than the invested amounts, market volatility and liquidity risks. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Such activities are not suitable for most investors.
Name Product Minimum Opening Deposit Minimum Opening Deposit Commission - ASX 200 Shares Available CFD markets Platforms
Vantage CFD
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MetaTrader 4
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TradingView
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Vantage has some of the lowest CFD trading fees in Australia including $0 commissions on all Gold trades. Plus you can find global trends and place trades through the new TradingView charts platform.
Plus500 CFD
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IC Markets CFD (True ECN Account)
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MetaTrader 4
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Blueberry Markets CFD Trading
US$100
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MetaTrader 5
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ACY Securities CFD
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Trading CFDs and forex on leverage is high-risk and you could lose more than your initial investment. It may not be suitable for every investor. Refer to the provider’s PDS and consider the risks before trading.

Important information: Powered by Finder.com.au. This information is general in nature and is no substitute for professional advice. It does not take into account your personal situation. This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of futures, stocks, ETFs, CFDs, options or any specific provider, service or offering. It should not be relied upon as investment advice or construed as providing recommendations of any kind. Futures, stocks, ETFs and options trading involves substantial risk of loss and therefore are not appropriate for most investors. You do not own or have any interest in the underlying asset. Capital is at risk, including the risk of losing more than the amount originally put in, market volatility and liquidity risks. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Tax on profits may apply. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement and Target Market Determination for the product on the provider's website. Consider your own circumstances, including whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money and possess the relevant experience and knowledge. We recommend that you obtain independent advice from a suitably licensed financial advisor before making any trades.
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Tom Stelzer is a publisher and writer for Finder, covering investing and cryptocurrency. He previously worked for Finder as a writer in Australia and the UK, covering things like personal finance, loans, investing, insurance as well as small business and business loans. He has a Master of Media Arts and Production and Bachelor of Communications in Journalism from the University of Technology Sydney. See full bio

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Investments analyst

Kylie Purcell is the senior investments editor and analyst at Finder. She has completed a Certificate of Securities and Managed Investments (RG146) and specialises in investment products including online brokers, robo-advisors, stocks and ETFs. See full bio

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