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Market Overview

American Stock Exchange: Then and Now

American Stock Exchange: Then and Now

The American Stock Exchange ("Amex") is currently called the NYSE MKT LLC and located in New York; it has the distinction of being the third-largest exchange by trading volume in the United States.

After being acquired by the NYSE Euronext (NYSE: NYX) on Oct. 1, 2008, for $260 million, it went through few nomenclature transformations before adopting the current name.

Storied History

The history of the Amex can be traced back to the 1800s when it was called the Curb Exchange. It was at the curbstone on Broad Street near Exchange Place where it met as a market those days — hence, the name.

The name was in vogue for over a century until 1921, when it moved to new quarters on Trinity. Therefore, the year 1921 is considered to be the official founding year of the exchange. The name Amex was adopted in 1953.

Subsequently, in November 1998, the Amex merged with the Nasdaq Inc (NASDAQ: NDAQ), with the merger engendering an entity called the Nasdaq-Amex Market Group. Despite the merger, Amex continued to be an active exchange.

With the October 2008 acquisition of the Amex by the NYSE Euronext, its content and data were integrated into the Gradually, the Amex was phased out — a process that was completed on January 16, 2009.

Small-Cap Savior

According to Investopedia, the Amex handles about 10 percent of all securities traded in the U.S. The type of securities currently traded on the Amex are small-cap stocks, options, exchange-traded funds, holding company depository receipts and derivatives.

The NYSE promotes it as an exchange that caters to small-caps, which have unique needs, ranging from increased liquidity to getting exposure to establishing IR and governance programs. The exchange also provides access to dedicated funding, advocacy content and networking.

As opposed to the 2,000 stocks that trade on the NYSE, merely 248 stocks trade on the NYSE MKT, according to a FT article.

Vital Cog In NYSE's Wheels

The NYSE MKT helped the NYSE to pose a credible threat to the Nasdaq, by giving a bigger exposure to U.S. derivatives and exchange-traded funds.

The NYSE MKT listing standards are not stringent as the NYSE per se.

Recently, the NYSE, which is now owned by the Intercontinental Exchange Inc (NYSE: ICE), revealed in a filing that it intends to end floor trading on its NYSE MKT exchange. The move is set to take place in the second quarter, ahead of its transition to Pillar, an integrated trading technology platform designed for its equities and options markets.

With the kind of changes being made with the NYSE MKT, and the strategic role it plays in NYSE's competitive positioning, it looks like it is here not only to stay but thrive and flourish and fuel NYSE's growth.

Related Links:

Alternative Stock Exchange IEX Aims To Eliminate High-Frequency Trading Advantages

4 Ways To Trade Bitcoin


Image Credit: By Bain News Service - Restoration by trialsanderrors: Curb brokers in Wall Street, New York City, 1920, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons


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