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Ameritrade plans index to track investment traffic

The online brokerage says it will begin releasing a daily index of what securities investors using their services are buying and selling.

Online brokerage Ameritrade today said it will begin releasing a daily index of what securities investors using their services are buying and selling.

The company will formally announce its Ameritrade Online Investor Index on Dec. 1. An Ameritrade spokeswoman declined to give further details.

The index will measure the percentage of online investors who were buyers out of total buyers and sellers on a given day and will also tally the top 10 stocks bought and sold.

Online companies--even those that are not necessarily Net measurement firms--are increasingly creating and publishing indexes on their Web sites based on the information they manage to gather when their services are used. Earlier this summer, Internet credit card issuer NextCard began a monthly index that tracks how consumers are buying online based on the monthly transactions of its NextCard Internet Visa cardholders.

Online measurement firm Media Metrix also this summer partnered with BizRate to publish data on online shoppers. The companies said at the time that e-tailers are increasingly demanding facts and figures to help them better target online consumers.

Ameritrade said that several months of its index data will be available on a new Index Web site to be made available to the public.