Seat

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DEFINITION of 'Seat'

Membership to the NYSE. Owning a seat on the NYSE enables one to trade on the floor of the exchange, either as an agent for someone else (floor broker), or for one's own personal account (floor trader). In the industry, owning a seat on the exchange is a prestigious position, with only a select few able to claim the position.

BREAKING DOWN 'Seat'

The phrase "owning a seat on the exchange" originates in a time before 1871, until which the exchange operated in a "call-market" fashion, which means stocks were traded individually. With this type of trading, each member would sit in an assigned seat and participate in the buying and selling of desired stocks, as they were called for trading.

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