# How is Value of Investment Calculated?

I have 491 shares in Card Factory. When the sell price was 48.71p, the app showed the total value of my investment as £239.36. However, 491 x 48.71 = 23916.61, which is £239.16 or £239.17 depending on whether your round up or down. So, the total was about 19p or 20p too high.

I watched the sell price for a few minutes as it fluctuated up and down and I saw a variety of different totals each time it hit 48.71: £239.17, £239.22, £239.26, £239.31 and £239.36.

Can somebody explain how the value of an investment is calculated please? I’ve tried using the Buy price, the Sell price and an average of them both, but I can’t figure it out.

This appears to happen for all shares that are priced in pence. For example, I think I also observed a discrepancy of £7.62 for HSBC Holdings and maybe even £55.38 for Carnival this morning, although I may have mistyped the Sell price in my spreadsheet.

It’s always the sell price that’s used to calculate your return.

It’s just number of shares times the sell. Keep in mind it’s always moving so recalculates all the time.

With foreign currency it’s got to take the exchange rate into account at the time of buying and then what it is when you sell, so depending on if the pound is stronger/weaker that could change your return.

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Thanks for taking the time to reply. I agree that it should be the number of shares multiplied by the Sell price but, as you can see from my example, it isn’t.

I’m talking about shares priced in pence, so an exchange rate isn’t relevant.

It seems like the prices and total update simultaneously most of the time, although sometimes one figure changes and the other remains static. If the issue is simply that these figures are not being updated in sync with each other then that is confusing and should be addressed. The app should never show a number of shares and a price, next to a total that doesn’t match the product of these figures.

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Yep there’s a second or so when it’s moving I assume rounding too, where the total doesn’t match.

12.19 > 12.20 the middle below is wrong and showing 12.20.

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Yes, that’s a perfect example. Well done for capturing that.

So, it seems like the price updates first and then the total updates a short time later with that price.

Since the price and total often appear to get updated at exactly the same time, you get the impression that the new price is reflected in the new total. However, it’s possible that the new total is actually always reflecting the previous price.

Anyway, do you agree that this is confusing? The price and total should always update simultaneously.

Yeah I know what you mean, its all roughly what you could get but is weird when its not adding up.

The 12.20 bid matches up to 10:22 am. I don’t have L2 access to look any further at the 12.19 it was showing. Looks like all buys at that time, close to the ask.

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How did you access that information? Do you work for Trading 212?

lol, no I don’t work for them.

They do offer actual Level 2 access, I only really swing trade for fun so I don’t need to see all the bids/asks.

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I’m new to all this. Where can I learn about these “levels”?

Level 1 is what everybody has (it shows the current best ask and bid), level 2 lets you see the order book to get a better picture of whats going through, level 3 is for brokers and MMs to create quotes.

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Thanks for that; it’s very helpful.