A physical piece of paper representing shares of ownership in a company. While records of ownership are usually maintained in electronic databases, stock certificates may also serve as proof of shares owned.
Each stock certificate reflects a unique identification number, the number of shares owned, a corporate seal and signatures. Each also typically features intricate designs similar to currency in order to discourage counterfeiting.
In Wisconsin, Green Bay Packers fans are so proud of any shares they have purchased in the fan-owned NFL franchise that many homes feature prominent displays of framed Packers stock certificates. Go Pack Go!