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We demonstrate a versatile capability to measure directly the magnetostrictive properties through the magnetization process on a nanometric scale using a modified scanning tunneling microscope. Single 10 mm long, 125 μm diam amorphous wires of both positive and negative magnetostriction have been studied and the data are compared with the hysteretic loops determined by both ac and SQUID magnetic measurements. This improved technique promises interesting possibilities, from both fundamental and applications points of view, in a number of scientific disciplines especially of interest in life and environmental sciences. © 1995 American Institute of Physics.