What Is Display Book?

Display Book was a proprietary tracking tool for the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), which was used on market exchanges to display, record, and execute market orders. The trade and order data included the order type, price, time, and quantity for a specific security. Specialists on an NYSE-affiliated exchange utilized the system for each security they traded.

Display Book was replaced by NYSE's Universal Trading Platform (UTP) in late 2012.

Key Takeaways

  • Display Book was a proprietary tracking tool for the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
  • Display Book was used on market exchanges to display, record, and execute market orders.
  • Specialists on an NYSE-affiliated exchange utilized Display Book for each security they traded.
  • Display Book was replaced by NYSE's Universal Trading Platform (UTP) in 2012.

Understanding Display Book

The New York Stock Exchange is the largest equity exchange in the world and is located in New York City. The NYSE Display Book was used by specialists on the exchange to execute orders and manage order flow. A specialist manages the inventory of a stock as well as the orders and pricing for buy and sell trades. If the market becomes out of balance, specialists step in to use their inventory to manage the sudden shift in demand for the stock.

The Display Book helped specialists to keep track of the market activity in a specific security and posted data continuously to the consolidated tape. Display Book essentially served as a matching engine for orders submitted electronically to specialists. Upon execution of an order, the system instantly sent back trade confirmation to the broker-dealer that initiated the order.

Universal Trading Platform (UTP)

Over the years, with advancements in technology and increasing demands from the marketplace, a new system was needed to replace Display Book. Some of the changing market dynamics that led to the implementation of the Universal Trading Platform (UTP) included:

  • An increase in the number of cash equity products on the exchanges
  • Closer integration across global equity and derivatives markets
  • Rapid advances in computing power and connectivity
  • Customer demands for faster execution speed

UTP is a turbocharged version of Display Book with lower latency, higher throughput, and greater functionality. UTP furthermore combined the functions of Display Book and Super Display Book, the supporting database system for Display Book.

NYSE and its family member exchanges completed their migration from Display Book to UTP. These exchanges include:

  • NYSE Arca, which is the U.S. electronic securities exchange that exchange-traded products (ETPs) and equities trade, including exchange traded funds (ETFs). ETFs are funds that contain a basket of securities that track or mirror an index, such as the S&P 500.
  • NYSE Euronext, which is the result of the 2007 merger of the NYSE and Euronext—the largest stock exchange in Europe.
  • ICE Futures Europe, which trades futures and options in Europe but has offices in Singapore and Canada as well as throughout Europe.
  • NYSE American, which is an exchange designed for smaller, growing companies and was formerly known as the American Stock Exchange.