A stock market is a place where stocks (shares) can be bought and sold
The term stock market refers to several exchanges in which shares of publicly held companies are bought and sold. Such financial activities are conducted through formal exchanges and via marketplaces that operate under a defined set of regulations.
Both “stock market” and “stock exchange” are often used interchangeably. Traders in the stock market buy or sell shares on one or more of the stock exchanges that are part of the overall stock market.