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American Stock Exchange

Many of us have suffered great financial losses over the last several months with our 401(k)s in the tank, our investments in shambles and our lives tossed asunder. One big question many people have is "Where did it all go?" While that question may not be as easy to answer as it seems, the fact is that some or all of your money may have passed through the American stock Exchange. But what is the American stock Exchange? What is its significance to my investments?

The American Stock exchange (AMEX) can find its roots in this country's history. The American Stock exchange found its footing in colonial trading of government issued securities. In 1842 on the corner of Broad Street near Exchange Place, the New York Curb Exchange got its start. It remained with that name for more than 100 years but this was where curbside brokers would gather to put up lists of the stocks that were for sale. If you've ever seen footage of stock market trading today you may have noticed traders wildly waving their arms and doing funny things with their hands; this was something that was started at the New York Curb Exchange as a way to indicate buy or sell orders just because the noise on the curb became too great.

It was not until 1921 that the American Stock Exchange actually got a roof over his head at 86 Trinity Place in lower Manhattan. The American Stock Exchange still is there; the building which continues to house it was declared a national historic landmark in 1978.

The American Stock Exchange keeps the same trading hours as the New York Stock Exchange which is 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on days of the week, sans Saturdays, Sundays, and declared holidays.

The American Stock Exchange is the smaller of the three stock exchanges and a place where many fortunes have been lost. However the American Stock Exchange also has made a great deal of people a great deal of money particularly through exchange traded funds (ETF's) and other hybrid securities. The trading of options is also quite popular on the American Stock Exchange with over 1700 options traded on stocks.

Business is conducted at the American Stock Exchange on the trading floor today through brokers and other dealers. When a buyer is looking to buy a stock that the American Stock Exchange has listed, the trade is handled by a "specialist" whose job it is to bring buyers and sellers together and ensure that market policies are upheld.

By Jesse Schmitt - Back in New York. Still searching.  





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