Last Updated on May 29, 2022
People who like to invest are often looking for the next thing. What can they put their money in that will potentially make them more money? While the stock market has risks, rising stock values compared with low interest rates on interest-bearing bank accounts can make for an attractive option.
Many people know that Dollar General is the largest dollar chain in the United States. It operates over 17,000 stores, with most of its revenue coming from rural stores. The question is: can an investor get in on that action? Can you buy stock in Dollar General?
The answer is yes, you can, although Dollar General stock also has a rather unusual history. Let’s dive more into the store.
A Brief History of Dollar General
The company today known as Dollar General began in during the late 1930s, in the midst of the Great Depression. J.L. Turner and his son, Cal Turner, were living in south-central Kentucky, not far from the Tennessee border, in a small town called Scottsville. J.L. Turner had observed many stores going out of business during the Depression, so he would buy out bankrupt general stores and then sell off the assets for profit.
In 1939, J.L. Turner and Cal Turner co-founded their first department store, J.L. Turner and Sons. The chain grew during the 1940s and 1950s. By then, but Cal was increasingly intrigued by another retail concept: a store where everything was a dollar. He’d seen how successful dollar item promotions were at bigger stores, and felt there was a viable market for a store that sold everything at that price. In 1955, J.L. and Cal converted one of their department stores into a dollar store, and Dollar General was born.
Over time, the store grew, and while it eventually started selling products for over a dollar, the name Dollar General stuck around. In time, the store would offer additional amenities like some groceries. More importantly, the company would see the massive opportunities that existed in rural areas where there were few or no stores.
The Strange History of Dollar General Stock
In 1968, the company now known as Dollar General Corporation went public. The windfall from the stock sale allowed the company to grow rapidly in the ensuing decades, with over 6,000 stores and $6 billion in revenue by the early 2000s.
In 2007, though, a rather unusual thing happened. A group of large investors came in and purchased all of the Dollar General stock, almost $7 billion worth, and turned the company back into a private company. The investors made significant changes to the corporate structure and closing hundreds of stores.
After a two-year stint as a private company, the company went public again in 2009, selling off $750 million in stock. Dollar General has remained a publicly traded company ever since.
Dollar General Stock Today
Dollar General today trades on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the stock symbol DG. At the time of this post, Dollar General stock is worth ten times what it was when it relaunched in 2009, so it has certainly grown in value. The company also pays out a dividend to investors (unlike some companies), so there are a couple of ways DG is potentially profitable.
Of course, stocks can rise or fall, so investors would be well advised to do their homework before getting into the stock market. Nevertheless, if Dollar General is a stock that interests you, it does exist.