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Numerous investors come to the stock market every day to either make money, receive dividends, or purchase shares of their favorite businesses to own a stake in them. The market is renowned for providing excellent returns to fortunate and savvy investors, but it is also risky by nature because its fortunes fluctuate along with the economy and the performance of the firms. The fact that exchanges are open to everyone, not just institutional investors, also results in the daily transfer of hundreds of billions of dollars in capital.

For example, on February 23, 2023, 4.6 billion shares and 31 million deals, excluding block trades, totaling a staggering $228 billion were transacted on the NASDAQ, one of America’s largest exchanges. On the same day, 3.8 billion Consolidated Tape A shares (shares of NYSE listed stocks) were traded on America’s main exchange, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Naturally, this volume also makes stock exchanges the economic barometers; as times are difficult for business, share values decline as investors withdraw their funds from the markets. The largest instances are the stock market meltdowns in 2008 and 2021, when the NASDAQ Composite lost up to 42% of its value as the outlook for the economy deteriorated.

Here is the list of the biggest stock exchanges in the world based on the market capitalization as of December 2022:

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), US – $22.77T

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is the 1st on the list of the largest stock exchange in the world and is a highly esteemed stock exchange in the USA which is situated at 11, Wall Street, New York City. It was established on May 17, 1792, and consists of 2,400 listed companies. It is the world’s largest stock exchange and has a market capitalization of US$ 22.77 trillion as of December 2022.

Back to the back of mergers has aided the New York Stock Exchange to gain its colossal size and global footprint. The blue-chip companies which are listed under NYSE are Berkshire Hathaway Inc, Coca-Cola, Walt Disney Company, McDonald’s Corporation, etc.

NASDAQ, United States – $16.24T

2nd on the list of the largest stock exchange in the world is NASDAQ which was primarily an abbreviation and stage for the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations. It is an American stock exchange and is headquartered at 151 W, 42nd Street, New York City.

The NASDAQ commenced its business on February 8, 1971, and is sighted as the world’s first electronically traded stock market. NASDAQ has a combined market capitalization of US$ 16.24 trillion as of December 2022 and is ranked 2nd in the list of largest stock exchanges.

It consists of more than 3,000 stocks listed under it and comprises the world’s humongous tech giants such as Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Amazon, Tesla, and Intel.

Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE), China – $6.74T

The Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) is located in the city of Shanghai, China, and is one of the two stock exchanges plying autonomously in the People’s Republic of China. Although its foundation traces back to 1866, it was adjourned after the Chinese Revolution in 1949. However, The Shanghai Exchange in its contemporary outlook was laid down in 1990.

Currently, Shanghai SSE is the world’s 3rd largest stock exchange with a combined market capitalization of US$ 6.74 trillion as of December 2022. The most interesting fact is that the absolute market cap of the SSE is constructed out of formerly state-run insurance companies & commercial banks. 

EURONEXT, Europe – $6.06T

The Word EURONEXT is an acronym for European New Exchange Technology and has its corporate address at La Défense in Greater Paris. EURONEXT was established in 2000 by the consolidation of the exchanges in Amsterdam, Paris, and Brussels.

Over the years, it amalgamated multiple exchanges, most particularly the New York Stock Exchange. It steers financial markets in Amsterdam, London, Brussels, Lisbon, Oslo, Dublin, and Paris.

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It has around 1,500 listed companies leading to a market capitalization worth US$ 6.06 trillion as of December 2022. EURONEXT provided the segments which are equities, warrants, exchange-traded, bonds, commodities, funds and certificates, derivatives, indices, and foreign exchange trading platforms.

Japan Stock Exchange (JPX) – $5.38T

The Japan Stock Exchange (JPX) is a Japanese financial services corporation that operates multiple securities exchanges including Tokyo Stock Exchange and Osaka Securities Exchange. It was formed by the merger of the two companies on January 1, 2013.

JPX has close to 3,800 listed companies with a syndicated market capitalization surpassing US$ 5.38 trillion as of December 2022. The TSE’s metric indicator is Nikkei 400 and it is home to some of the voluminous  Japanese giants with international exposure, including Toyota, Suzuki, Honda, and Mitsubishi, and Sony.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE), China – $4.7T

The Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE) is a stock exchange based in the city of Shenzhen, in the People’s Republic of China. It is one of two stock exchanges operating independently in Mainland China, the other being the larger Shanghai Stock Exchange.

As of December 2022, SZSE has 2,645 listed companies and a market capitalization of US$ 4.7 trillion. Many of the companies within this market are subsidiaries of companies in which the Chinese government maintains a controlling interest. This places it among the top 10 stock exchanges in the world.

Honk Kong Stock Exchange (SEHK) – $4.56T

The Honk Kong Stock Exchange (SEHK)  is located in Hong Kong and is the world’s 7th largest stock exchange on the basis of market capitalization.  It consists of 2,236 listed companies with a wholesome market capitalization of US$ 4.56 trillion as of December 2022.

Its origin can be traced back to the mid-1800s and since then it has gone through a series of mergers and agglomeration with other exchanges. Some of the gigantic and eminent companies listed under the Hong Kong Stock Exchange are China Mobile, and HSBC Holdings & Petro China.

National Stock Exchange (NSE), India -$3.34T

National Stock Exchange of India Limited (NSE) is the leading government-owned stock exchange of India, located in Mumbai, Maharashtra. NSE was established in 1992 as the first dematerialized electronic exchange in the country.

The NSE has approximately 1952 listed companies and has a market capitalization of US$3.34 trillion as of December 2022. NSE’s flagship index, the NIFTY 50, a 50 stock index is used extensively by investors in India and around the world as a barometer of the Indian capital market, which makes it among the top 10 stock exchanges in the world.

In a country’s economy, stock exchanges play a critical role. Investors and traders can use their platform to trade and invest in securities as well as other financial assets like commodities, bonds, and derivatives. However, it is critical to understand how the market works before investing.

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