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History of the American and NASDAQ Stock Exchanges

Selected References

Compiled by Ellen Terrell
Business Reference Services
September 2006;
Updated October 2012


The American Stock Exchange (AMEX) got its start in the 1800's and was known as the "Curb Exchange" until 1921 because it met as a market at the curbstone on Broad Street near Exchange Place. Its founding date is generally considered as 1921 because this is the year when it moved into new quarters on Trinity. However, it wasn't until 1953 that it officially became the American Stock Exchange. In November 1998, the National Association of Security Dealers announced that the American Stock Exchange would merge with the National Association of Securities Dealers creating "The Nasdaq-Amex Market Group." However, the American Stock Exchange remained as an active exchange.

Broad Street and curb brokers, New York City, 1916
Above:
Broad Street and curb brokers, New York City, 1916 photographed by Irving Underhill.
Prints and Photographs Division (Library of Congress)
Reproduction number: LC-USZ62-119537

In October 1, 2008, the American Stock Exchange was acquired External Link by NYSE Euronext. NYSE Euronext External Link integrated amex.com content and data into the nyse.com website, phasing out amex.com, effective January 16, 2009. The new name is NYSE Amex External Link.

Founded by the National Association of Securities Dealers, the NASDAQ External Link began trading on February 8, 1971, as the world's first electronic stock market, trading for over 2,500 securities. In 2000, NASDAQ membership voted to restructure and spin off External Link NASDAQ into a shareholder-owned, for-profit company. In 2007, the NASD merged with the New York Stock Exchange's regulation committee to form the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ( FINRA). In May 2007, NASDAQ announced External Link a transaction to create global exchange and technology company with Swedish exchange operator, OMX. Later that year, on November 7, 2007, NASDAQ OMX announced that it had signed an agreement External Link to acquire the Philadelphia Stock Exchange, the oldest stock exchange in America, founded in 1790. Today NASDAQ is the largest electronic stock market with over 3,000 companies listed.

Internet Resources

Additional Reading

  • AMEX: A History of the American Stock Exchange, 1921-1971 by Robert Sobel. New York, Weybright and Talley [1972].
    LC Call Number: HG4575.S6
    Catalog Record: 72086971
  • The Curbstone Brokers : The Origins of the American Stock Exchange by Robert Sobel. Washington, D.C. : BeardBooks, 2000.
    LC Call Number: HG4575.2 .S663 2000
    Catalog Record: 00023571

Library of Congress Catalog Searches

Additional works on the American Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ stock market in The Library of Congress may be identified by searching the Online Catalog under appropriate Library of Congress subject headings. Choose the topics you wish to search from the following list of Library of Congress subject headings to link directly to the Catalog and automatically execute a search for the subject selected. For assistance in locating other subject headings which relate to this topic, please consult a reference librarian.

American Stock Exchange

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

NASDAQ Stock Market

Stocks--Prices--United States

Stock exchanges--United States

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  December 11, 2013
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