The exchanges in the Asian region are located in the countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China (includes Hong Kong), Georgia, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The countries of Asia are mostly divided into developed and developing economies. The highly developed economies include Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan.
The regions highest ranked gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016 was China (2nd globally) with a GDP of $11.2 trillion. In addition to China, Japan (3rd) and India (7th) had a top 10 GDP ranking. Further, as members of the BRIC nations, China and India are both expected to become one of the world's dominant suppliers of manufactured goods and services by 2050.
Ranked upon Purchasing Power Parity (PPP), China led the world with a PPP of $21.4 trillion followed by both India (3rd) and Japan (4th), each making it into the top 10.
To the surprise of many, despite having the world's second-largest economy, China is still viewed as a developing country due to their per capita GDP, which remains below any accepted minimum threshold for developed-country status.
Historically, while the Asian markets have had stock exchanges for more than 100 years, they did not rise to prominence until after World War II. Japan set the pace with protectionist policies and a government led development effort, which turned the country into an exporting powerhouse.
Shortly after, its Asian neighbors took notice of the trend. Several nations and territories, including Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, India and China, began a period of rapid industrialization, which continues today. These nations entered the global marketplace by exporting mass-produced products and over time, many of them evolved their efforts to entering the high-tech sector.
While there has been a history of capital market development and exchange activity in the region, the first formal exchanges did not appear until the later 19th century.
Established in 1875, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) may be the oldest stock exchange in Asia. In its earliest days, before it was formally established, a small group of stockbrokers enjoyed an open-air market setting, working under the shade of banyan trees.
The Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) was established in 1878 and it is one of the most influential exchanges in the world.
Hong Kong's first formal stock market, the Association of Stockbrokers in Hong Kong, was established in 1891. It officially took the name Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1914 and it is among the largest exchanges in Asia.
The largest exchange in Asia is the Japan Exchange Group (JPX), which is comprised of 2 exchanges that combined in 2013, the Tokyo Stock Exchange and the Osaka Securities Exchange. The JPX finished 2016 with a market capitalization of $5.0 trillion.
Other large exchanges in Asia include the Shanghai Stock Exchange ($4.1t), Shenzhen Stock Exchange ($3.2t), Hong Kong Exchange ($3.2t), Bombay Stock Exchange ($1.6t), National Stock Exchange of India ($1.5t), Korea Exchange ($1.3t) and the Taiwan Stock Exchange ($844b).