DEFINITION of 'London Stock Exchange - LSE'

The primary stock exchange in the U.K. and the largest in Europe. Originated in 1773, the regional exchanges were merged in 1973 to form the Stock Exchange of Great Britain and Ireland, later renamed the London Stock Exchange (LSE). The Financial Times Stock Exchange (FTSE) 100 Share Index, or "Footsie", is the dominant index, containing 100 of the top blue chips on the LSE.

BREAKING DOWN 'London Stock Exchange - LSE'

The LSE is the most international of all stock exchanges with 350 companies from more than 50 countries, and it is the premier source of equity-market liquidity, benchmark prices and market data in Europe. Linked by partnerships to international exchanges in Asia and Africa, the LSE aims to remove cost and regulatory barriers of capital markets worldwide.

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