AMEX Stock Exchange
AMEX Stock Exchange represents third-largest U.S. options marketplace and a leadership in ETFs, cash equities, closed-end funds and structured products.
The American Stock Exchange or AMEX stock exchange as it is commonly known was launched in 1975. It is a hybrid marketplace that offers a wide spread of indexes, Exchange Traded Funds, equities, etc. It offers more than 1900 different types of options to its investors.
The average daily volume of this exchange is about 800,000 contracts. Although it does not offer fully electronic exchange services, it is still very popular among the investors. It is the third largest stock exchange in the United States in terms of trading volume and handles roughly 10% of all the securities traded in the US.
The AMEX stock exchange, also known as Curb Exchange, is located in New York. It was established with an aim to provide support to small companies who were unable to take part in the New York Stock exchange. When compared to NYSE, we find that its standards have less specifications. It is a leader of ETFs and publishes an array of indices in order to support various index-based products such as index options, structured products, ETFs, etc. This exchange is home to 700+ companies.
NYSE Amex Equities' trading hours usually start from 9.30 in the morning and extend till 4pm (Eastern Standard Time) each day. One can trade in the investment products on all the days of the week other than Saturdays and Sundays. If there are any federally mandated holidays which would cause the market to shut down, it is declared in advance by NYSE Amex Equities. Some of these holidays which are common between the AMEX stock exchange the NYSE are Good Friday, President's Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Independence Day, Christmas, Thanksgiving, Martin Luther King Jr's Birthday and New Year's Day. The after hours trading time is from 4pm to 8 pm ET.
The listings of companies under AMEX stock exchange can be segregated into the following segments:
- Common stocks - These are the most common type of shares that are traded in the stock exchange. These stocks represent a certain degree of ownership, depending on the number of voting shares that are held in relation to the company's total number of voting shares that have been issued. A lot of investors are attracted to the stock market by these common stocks since they provide them lucrative income.
- Index Shares - This is another reason why the investors flock to the stock markets. The index shares are great ways of investing and are also a great addition to the investor's portfolio because it avoids the fuss of performing fundamental analysis. Index shares are also highly liquid and have comparatively lower expenses when compared to regular funds.
Main stock indices
The index options of AMEX stock exchange were introduced in order to assist the investors in the trading process so that they can seek profit from the price movements of these investment products in the stock market. There are two main indices that track the stocks of Amex namely the Amex Major Market Index and Amex Composite Index. It also has derivates such as Diamonds which tracks the Standard & Poor's and Dow Jones Industrial Average Receipts. The derivates that track the S&P 500 index are known as Spiders.
The AMEX stock exchange started out in the year 1842 as a market that was located on Broad Street, at the curbstone, which was near Exchange Place. These curb brokers used to gather around lamp posts or mail boxes or anything that would protect them from the harsh winds and weather just for the sake of putting up their lists of stocks meant for sale. Gradually the trading activity as well as the volume of transactions increased to such a level that this market was moved indoors. This shifting of the market took place in 1921 to 86-Trinity Place in Manhattan. The practice of using hand signals which were introduced for the purpose of trading continued till this date.
Over the years, Amex's core business shifted from stocks to ETFs and options. However stocks are still being sold in small or mid sizes. There were two important merges of the Amex, one occurred in 1998 with the NASD, the same company that runs the NASDAQ exchange and the other one in with NYSE Euronext.
During the year 2008 in the month of January, NYSE Euronext made its plan of acquisition of the AMEX stock exchange known to the public along with the information that it planned to acquire it for 260 million dollars in stock. In the same year during October the NYSE Euronext managed to acquire it entirely and also merged it with Alter Next European Exchange. It was renamed as NYSE Amex Equities which is its current name. Therefore, although this started out as a competitor or alternative to NYSE, ironically, it is now owned and controlled by it.
Written by: Goran Dolenc
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