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Stock Exchanges

Stock Exchanges by Market Capitalization - 2019

By Michael J Defosse - November 25, 2019

What is a Stock Exchange?

A stock exchange is a market, physical or electronic, where securities can be bought or sold. It connects the buyers with the sellers, which provides important liquidity to the security. A stock exchange is also known as a stock market or bourse.

Overview of the Top 50 Stock Exchanges

While there are over 200 stock exchanges in the world, many are small and have limited trading so our research has focused upon ranking the 50 largest stock exchanges by market capitalization or market cap.

In our analysis of the top stock exchanges, we looked at their closing market capitalization as of December 31, 2018, which was converted into US dollars (USD) using their 2018 closing foreign exchange or forex (FX) rates. For more detailed information on each stock exchange, follow their highlighted link.

  • 1. New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

  • Location: United States

    Market Capitalization: $20.679 trillion

  • 2. NASDAQ

  • Location: United States

    Market Capitalization: $9.757 trillion

  • 3. Japan Exchange Group (Tokyo Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Japan

    Market Capitalization: $5.297 trillion

  • 4. Shanghai Stock Exchange

  • Location: China

    Market Capitalization: $3.919 trillion

  • 5. Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing

  • Location: China

    Market Capitalization: $3.819 trillion

  • 6. Euronext

  • Location: Netherlands, Belgium, Ireland, Spain, United Kingdom, France

    Market Capitalization: $3.730 trillion

  • 7. London Stock Exchange

  • Location: United Kingdom

    Market Capitalization: $3.638 trillion

  • 8. Shenzhen Stock Exchange

  • Location: China

    Market Capitalization: $2.405 trillion

  • 9. BSE Limited

  • Location: India

    Market Capitalization: $2.088 trillion

  • 10. National Stock Exchange of India

  • Location: India

    Market Capitalization: $2.056 trillion

  • 11. TMX Group (Toronto Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Canada

    Market Capitalization: $1.938 trillion

  • 12. Deutsche Börse (German Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Germany

    Market Capitalization: $1.755 trillion

  • 13. SIX Swiss Exchange

  • Location: Switzerland

    Market Capitalization: $1.441 trillion

  • 14. Korea Exchange

  • Location: Korea

    Market Capitalization: $1.414 trillion

  • 15. NASDAQ Nordic Exchanges

  • Location: Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland

    Market Capitalization: $1.323 trillion

  • 16. Australian Securities Exchange

  • Location: Australia

    Market Capitalization: $1.263 trillion

  • 17. Taiwan Stock Exchange

  • Location: China

    Market Capitalization: $959 billion

  • 18. B3 - Brasil Bolsa Balcao

  • Location: Brazil

    Market Capitalization: $917 billion

  • 19. Johannesburg Stock Exchange

  • Location: South Africa

    Market Capitalization: $865 billion

  • 20. BME Spanish Exchanges

  • Location: Spain

    Market Capitalization: $724 billion

  • 21. Singapore Exchange

  • Location: Singapore

    Market Capitalization: $687 billion

  • 22. Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul)

  • Location: Saudi Arabia

    Market Capitalization: $596 billion

  • 23. Moscow Exchange

  • Location: Russia

    Market Capitalization: $576 billion

  • 24. The Stock Exchange of Thailand

  • Location: Thailand

    Market Capitalization: $501 billion

  • 25. Indonesia Stock Exchange

  • Location: Indonesia

    Market Capitalization: $487 billion

  • 26. Bursa Malaysia (Malaysia Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Malaysia

    Market Capitalization: $398 billion

  • 27. Bolsa Mexicana de Valores (Mexican Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Mexico

    Market Capitalization: $385 billion

  • 28. Oslo Stock Exchange

  • Location: Norway

    Market Capitalization: $267 billion

  • 29. Philippine Stock Exchange

  • Location: Philippines

    Market Capitalization: $258 billion

  • 30. Bolsa de Comercio de Santiago (Santiago Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Chile

    Market Capitalization: $251 billion

  • 31. Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange

  • Location: Israel

    Market Capitalization: $187 billion

  • 32. Warsaw Stock Exchange

  • Location: Poland

    Market Capitalization: $170 billion

  • 33. Qatar Stock Exchange

  • Location: Qatar

    Market Capitalization: $163 billion

  • 34. Borsa Istanbul (Istanbul Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Turkey

    Market Capitalization: $149 billion

  • 35. Tehran Stock Exchange

  • Location: Iran

    Market Capitalization: $146 billion

  • 36. Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange

  • Location: United Arab Emirates

    Market Capitalization: $138 billion

  • 37. Hochiminh Stock Exchange

  • Location: Vietnam

    Market Capitalization: $124 billion

  • 38. Weiner Borse (Vienna Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Austria

    Market Capitalization: $117 billion

  • 39. Irish Stock Exchange

  • Location: Ireland

    Market Capitalization: $110 billion

  • 40. Bolsa de Valores de Colombia (Colombia Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Colombia

    Market Capitalization: $104 billion

  • 41. Bolsa de Valores de Lima (Lima Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Peru

    Market Capitalization: $93 billion

  • 42. Taipei Exchange

  • Location: China

    Market Capitalization: $92 billion

  • 43. Dubai Financial Market

  • Location: Ireland

    Market Capitalization: $86 billion

  • 44. NZX Limited

  • Location: New Zealand

    Market Capitalization: $86 billion

  • 45. Bourse de Casablanca (Casablanca Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Morocco

    Market Capitalization: $61 billion

  • 46. Luxembourg Stock Exchange

  • Location: Luxembourg

    Market Capitalization: $49 billion

  • 47. Bolsa de Comercio de Buenos Aires (Buenos Aires Stock Exchange)

  • Location: Argentina

    Market Capitalization: $46 billion

  • 48. The Egyptian Exchange

  • Location: Egypt

    Market Capitalization: $42 billion

  • 49. Dhaka Stock Exchange

  • Location: Bangladesh

    Market Capitalization: $40 billion

  • 50. Athens Stock Exchange

  • Location: Greece

    Market Capitalization: $38 billion

Source Data: WFE Annual Statistics Guide 2018

History of Stock Exchanges

The origins of a stock exchange or stock market goes back to the 1300's when merchants in Venice used securities of other governments to transact business. At the time, there were no "stocks" as we know it today so the securties were debt securities.

The first organized stock exchange may have been in Antwerp, Belgium around 1531 where brokers and moneylenders would meet to transact their business, which was primarily promissary notes and bonds. It wasn't until the Dutch East India Company, founded in 1602, that a share certificate was issued. The company financed their ships and goods trading in return for a share of the profits through a dividend and instead of basing it upon an individual voyage, which was how it had conducting business in the past, it combined its voyages and tied it together through the issuance of tradable, paper shares.

The success of the Dutch East India Company quickly spread, especially in England, where brokers and investors would meet in London coffee houses to trade securities. Soon, formal exchanges began to appear throughout Europe and in 1792, the beginning stages of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) occured through the Buttonwood Agreement.

Importance of Stock Exchange

One of the most important functions of a stock exchange is liquidity. Buyers and sellers are put together to trade their securities and by conducting it through a formal market structure, both sides receive fair prices based upon the supply and demand of the security. Profitability and growth are important factors that influence supply and demand.

Benefits of Stock Exchange

In addition to liquidity, stock exchanges often act as a reliable economic barometer that measures the economic activity of a country where the stock exchange is located. A significant rise or fall in shares prices can indicate a boom or recession in that economy.

A stock exchange also provides greater transparency and safety for all parties. Rules are in place, set by each exchange and governing body, to protect investors and sellers with their transactions.

Lastly, stock exchanges help to support entreprenuership. As part of the capital market system, companies raise capital through selling shares in their company in an initial offering. Without a stock exchange providing liquidity in the secondary market, companies may raise less capital or possibly no capital. Many companies that we rely upon today may not have existed with the benefit of a stock exchange.

  • Wall Street Journal
  • Financial Times
  • Bloomberg
  • Nikkei Asian Review
  • Reuters