What is a yield?


Yield refers to the earnings (your payments from a security you hold) generated and then realized (that you get to keep) on an investment over a period. You add that up, then you divide it by either the total amount you invested OR the current market value of the stock. Yield is specifically expressed in percentage terms so you would view this value as a percentage. 


Depending on the nature and valuation (fixed/fluctuating) of the stock, yields may be classified as known (it can be calculated as of today) or anticipated (they would be guessing).