What Is the NYSE Amex Equities?

The term NYSE Amex Equities refers to an American stock exchange best known for trading small-cap, micro-cap, corporate bonds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and other kinds of investments. The exchange was called the American Stock Exchange (AMEX) before being acquired by NYSE Euronext. The exchange went through a series of name changes since it started in 1849. Today, it's called the NYSE American and operates as a fully-electronic exchange. 

Key Takeaways

  • NYSE Amex Equities is an American exchange that now goes by the name NYSE American.
  • Investors can trade small-cap, micro-cap, corporate bonds, exchange-traded funds, and other investments.
  • The exchange is fully electronic representing more than 8,000 companies.
  • The most active shares on the exchange operate in the energy, mining, medical, and pharmaceutical sectors.

Understanding the NYSE Amex Equities

The NYSE Amex Equities' roots trace back as far as 1849 when trades took place outdoors. At the time, it adopted the name New York Curb Agency as a way to reflect the unorthodox transactions that took place. The exchange moved indoors about two decades later when it took on the name New York Cub Exchange. It wasn't until 1953 that it changed its name to the American Stock Exchange. At this point, the AMEX was one of the largest exchanges in the United States, second only to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

NYSE Amex Equities was rebranded in 2008 after Euronext acquired the former American Stock Exchange. The change to NYSE Amex Equities was the first in 50 years when it was renamed the American Stock Exchange. At one time, the American Stock Exchange was the second-largest exchange in the United States—second to the New York Stock Exchange. That role has since been filled by Nasdaq. In 2009, NYSE Euronext purchased the exchange and renamed it NYSE Amex Equities. The name only lasted a few years when it became the NYSE MKT. After the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approval of IEX, NYSE MKT rebranded to NYSE American to reflect the newly implemented speed bump.

As mentioned above, the exchange is fully electronic and is designed as such in order to limit latency speeds. It facilitates institutional trading with products like an electronic designated market maker (DMM) assigned to each listed company and a delay mechanism to encourage midpoint trading. This unique blend of services provides investors with an additional method to enter and exit positions while limiting adverse selection.

In 2016, NYSE American announced plans to introduce a 350-microsecond speed bump in trading small and micro-cap stocks—a concept made famous by IEX's founder. 

NYSE American is among the largest American stock exchanges by trading volume. The most active shares on the exchange operate in the energy, mining, medical, and pharmaceutical sectors. According to the company's website, the exchange provides a place for more than 8,000 growing companies to list their shares. 

Special Considerations

NYSE American was a member of the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) from 1998 to 2004 before the exchange returned to private ownership. In early 2017, the exchange announced plans to end floor trading as part of a transition to a new technology platform. This breaks from the tradition of brokers roaming the exchange floor during normal trading hours.

Like other exchanges in the U.S., trading takes place during the following sessions:

  • Pre-Opening: 6:30 a.m. ET
  • Early Trading: 7:00 a.m. ET to 9:30 a.m. ET
  • Core Trading: 9:30 a.m. ET to 4.00 a.m. ET
  • Late Trading: 4:00 a.m. ET to 8:00 a.m. ET