A stock corporation is a for-profit corporation which has shareholders (stockholders), each of whom receives a portion of the ownership of the corporation through shares of stock. These shares may receive a return on their investment in the form of dividends. Shares are used for voting on matters of corporate policy or to elect directors, at the corporation's annual meeting and at other meetings of the corporation.
The Articles of Incorporation include the initial number and price of shares to be issued. If one person owns one share of stock more than any other person, that individual is said to have "controlling interest" in the corporation.
Corporations may also be non-stock, and a corporation may switch back and forth between stock and non-stock status.