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NYSE Successfully Carries Out Fully Electronic Trading Session For First Time In 228 Years

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Shivdeep Dhaliwal
·2 min read
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NYSE conducts its first-ever fully electronic trading without the presence of people on its iconic trading floor on Monday

What Happened

The New York Stock Exchange has never closed its trading floor on the same day as markets were open for business in its 228-year history. The decision to carry out all trade electronically was made because of the current COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement the Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (NYSE: ICE) owned exchange said on its website, “We have taken this step for two key reasons. One, the safety of our employees and Floor personnel is paramount, and, despite their continued willingness, keep the Floor operating, we felt it prudent to move to all-electronic trading at this time. Two, it is our firm belief that the U.S. equity markets must remain open and trading, despite the extreme volatility triggered by this crisis.”

The Opening Bell on the all-electronic session was rung by Tom Greene, VP of Building Operations at NYSE, and the closing bell rung by Kevin Fitzgibbons, the Chief Security Officer.

The President of NYSE Stacey Cunnigham said on Twitter, “While their unique access and order types are unavailable during the Trading Floor closure, many NYSE Floor Brokers are also connecting remotely and using general electronic order types, the same way orders are entered by member firms not physically present on the Floor.”

Jay Woods, NYSE Executive Floor Governor, expressed his satisfaction with the outcome on Twitter, saying, “Overall, remote trading went smoothly. Sadly, another down day but some possible things to build on. Looking forward to getting back home to the @NYSE when the coast is clear.”

Why It Matters

On Monday, NYSE Composite Volumes stood at 7.40 billion, while on Friday, volumes were 9.04 billion. The average trading volume on NYSE ranges between 2 and 6 billion shares.

NYSE is the only exchange in the United States that still has a physical trading floor. Two employees had tested positive for COVID-19, which led to the decision to conduct all trading electronically.

Price Action

Intercontinental Exchange shares traded 2.84% higher at $68.75 in the after-hours session on Monday. The shares had closed the regular session 8.41% higher at $66.85.

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