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NASDAQ vs. NYSE: Key Differences

Sarah Fisher
These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.
These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.

American stocks trade primarily on the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. The NASDAQ has a reputation as a more high-tech exchange. Meanwhile, the New York Stock Exchange, or NYSE, has a stodgier, but safer, reputation. Learn the similarities and differences of NASDAQ vs NYSE.

NYSE Overview

The New York Stock Exchange, or NYSE, dates back to May 17, 1792. That day, 24 New York City stockbrokers and merchants signed the Buttonwood Agreement outside 68 Wall Street and formed the exchange. The Buttonwood Agreement got its name after all parties signed it under a buttonwood tree.

The exchange now trades about 1.46 billion shares per day. As a result, it’s the leading stock exchange in the world. The NYSE trades stocks for 2,800 companies, which range from blue-chip to new, high-growth companies. However, each company listed on the NYSE has to meet strict requirements. The NYSE has a reputation of trading strong, high-quality securities, and their requirements help maintain that reputation.

The major players on the floor of the NYSE are specialists and brokers. Specialists and brokers create a system that provides investors with competitive prices based on supply and demand. Brokers are employed by investment firms and trade on behalf of their firm or their firm’s clients. Brokers bring the buy and sell orders to the specialists.

Specialists stay in one location on the floor and deal with one or several specific stocks, depending on how much they trade. Those same specialists accept buy and sell orders from brokers and manage the actual auction. Specialists will also ensure there is a market for their specified stocks at all times. For example, if they have to, they will invest their own firm’s capital to keep the market active and maintain the shares’ liquidity.

NASDAQ Overview

These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.
These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.

NASDAQ stands for the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations. It was created by the National Association of Securities Details, and opened on Feb. 8, 1971, as the world’s first electronic stock market. Today, it has more than 3,300 company listings. It is located in Times Square in New York City.

As an electronic exchange, it has no physical trading floor. Consequently, no one has to be there in person to make trades. Instead, the NASDAQ exchange uses automated computer networks to make trades. NASDAQ is a dealers’ market, which means brokers buy and sell stocks through a market maker rather than from each other. Market makers deal in certain stocks and hold a certain number of stocks on their books. As a result, when brokers want to purchase shares, they can purchase them directly from a market maker. The NASDAQ carries out about 1.8 billion trades per day, more than any other United States stock exchange.

NASDAQ trades stocks of a variety of companies. However, it’s known as a high-tech exchange that trades many new, high growth, and volatile stocks.

NASDAQ vs NYSE: Differences

Although the NASDAQ makes more trades per day, the NYSE’s market capitalization far exceeds that of the NASDAQ. Also, hey have different trading models. NYSE has a hybrid trading model that uses both people and technology, whereas NASDAQ is an entirely electronic exchange. Although NYSE still has its Wall Street trading floor, the vast majority of exchanges occur  at the NYSE’s data center in Mahwah, New Jersey.

Looking at NASDAQ vs NYSE offers a glimpse at different types of markets. The NYSE is an auction market, while NASDAQ is a dealer market. In an auction market, the highest bid for a stock matches the lowest asking price. In a dealer market, buying and selling happens in split seconds electronically through dealers. The NYSE has one Designated Market Maker (DMM) per stock that ensures a fair and orderly market in that security. Meanwhile, the NASDAQ has an average of 14 market makers per stock.

NYSE vs NASDAQ: Similarities

The stereotype is that the NYSE is where all of the big blue-chip companies are listed, but the NASDAQ is where tech startups are listed. There’s some truth to that, but some NASDAQ stocks belong to some of the largest companies. traded today. For decades, the NYSE didn’t allow small, new companies to list. As a result, NASDAQ was a place where newer companies could list their IPOs. However, NYSE is larger and lists more established companies, but it is up to 70% to 80% cheaper for a company to list its stock on NASDAQ.

Before 2006, NYSE was a privately traded corporation, while NASDAQ was a publicly traded corporation. In March of 2006, the NYSE went public after being a not-for-profit exchange for nearly 214 years. Today, both the NASDAQ and the NYSE trade on their own exchanges. Since the NYSE is now a publicly traded corporation, it must follow the standard filing requirements laid out by the Securities and Exchange Commission, as must NASDAQ.

The Bottom Line

These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.
These are the differences between NASDAQ and NYSE.

The NASDAQ and NYSE have more similarities than they once did. But they still have operational differences and reputation differences that affect which kinds of securities they trade. If you’re looking for growth-oriented tech stocks, you’re probably going to want to look at the NASDAQ. However, if you’re looking for established, blue-chip companies, you’re probably going to want to look at securities on the NYSE.

Investment Tips

  • There are a lot of investing strategies out there, and you might not be sure which one is right for you. Consider working with a financial advisor who can help you navigate the market. Finding the right financial advisor that fits your needs doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with financial advi0-psors in your area in 5 minutes. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that will help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

  • How much will your investment need to grow to meet your goals? What level of investment risk can you handle? How big of a bite will taxes and inflation take out of your investments? If you don’t have the answers to these questions, SmartAsset’s investing guide may help point the way.

  • If your investing works out, you may end up owing capital gains tax. SmartAsset can help you figure out how much you’ll owe when you sell your stocks with our capital gains tax calculator.

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