The November presidential election drove big increases in searches for stock indexes while Q3 earnings reports drove increased searches for individual stocks. During November, searches for the Dow Jones Industrial Average increased by 163 percent month-over-month, while Colgate-Palmolive and Facebook experienced big gains in search activity. Read on for our full findings.

Top ten stock tickers searched in November

Every month, we use online behavioral data from our 100-million panel to rank interest in publicly traded shares on U.S. markets. We have focused our analysis on individual stock searches on Yahoo Finance to demonstrate public interest in specific companies, however we could not overlook the change in interest in stock indexes that followed the U.S. presidential election. In November, the most popular ticker searched on Yahoo Finance was the Dow Jones Industrial Average, followed by the S&P500.

On the individual stock front, Facebook claimed first place with 16 percent of the top ten searches, dethroning Apple after eight consecutive months in the lead. The increased search activity for Facebook’s stock was most likely due to the release of positive Q3 earnings report on November 3rd, proving yet again that quarterly earnings reports drive interest in company stocks.

For the first time since we began analyzing the U.S. stock market in February, Apple was not the most popular stock searched, but the runner up. In November, Apple accounted for 14 percent of the top ten stock searches, following a 19 percent MoM decrease in search activity.

What else has changed? Colgate-Palmolive claimed third place with 14 percent of the searches, and the shipping company DryShips joined the list amid increased activity within the shipping sector. Wells Fargo and Twitter dropped off the list, probably a sign of stability returning to those newsmaking companies.

# Stock % of top 10 MoM change in search activity
1 Facebook 16% 81%
2 Apple 14% -19%
3 Colgate-Palmolive 14% 228%
4 Amazon 11% -12%
5 Bank of America 9% 32%
6 AT&T 8% -21%
7 General Electric 7% -1%
8 Ford 7% 12%
9 DryShips 7% N./A
10 Tesla 7% -12%

November’s movers and shakers

All of the stocks with increased MoM search activity in November released their quarterly earnings report that month. These stocks account for 8 out of 10 of the tickers in the list, with Twitter and Netflix the only stocks to see a decrease in search activity in November.

The CPG company Colgate-Palmolive took first place for MoM changes in stock searches, with a 228 percent increase in search activity on the heels of positive Q3 results. Nvidia came in second with a 117 percent MoM increase in searches, followed by Facebook with a 81 percent MoM increase in searches.

GoPro came in fourth with an 81 percent MoM increase in searches, following their Q3 earnings report published on November 3rd. However, as opposed to the leading three companies, the increased interest in GoPro resulted from a negative earnings report, showing once again that both good and bad news can increase public interest in individual stocks.  

# Stock MoM change in search activity
1 Colgate-Palmolive 228%
2 Nvidia 117%
3 Facebook 81%
4 GoPro 81%
5 Valeant Pharmaceuticals 61%
6 Starbucks 57%
7 Twitter -56%
8 Home Depot 51%
9 Cisco 44%
10 Netflix -44%

Bottom Line: This month’s takeaway is not a surprise: Searches for stock indexes went crazy following the election of Donald Trump as 45th President of the United States. However, fundamental things applied elsewhere: Quarterly earnings reports drove interest in company stocks. Questions remain: Why did Apple lose its “most searched” stock position after eight months? Will it return to first place in December? We will have the answer to at least one of those questions in early 2017. Until then, we wish you and your family peace in this holiday season and a prosperous new year!