São Paulo Stock Exchange

What Is the São Paulo Stock Exchange?

The term São Paulo Stock Exchange refers to the former name of one of Brazil's stock markets. The exchange is located in Sāo Paulo. Founded in 1890 as Bolsa de Valores de São Paulo (BOVESPA), it is now part of B3 or Brasil, Bolsa, Balcão. B3 was formed following the merger of the exchange with the Brazilian Mercantile & Futures Exchange or Bolsa de Mercadorias e Futuros in 2008. The exchange is among the largest in the Americas with a market capitalization of $978 billion and 351 listed companies as of February 2021.

Key Takeaways

  • The São Paulo Stock Exchange is a Brazilian stock exchange.
  • It is one of the largest exchanges in the Americas.
  • Also known as the BOVESPA, the exchange merged with the Brazilian Mercantile & Futures Exchange to form B3 or Brasil, Bolsa, Balcão in 2008.
  • There were more than 350 companies listed on the exchange as of April 2021.
  • Ibovespa is the main performance indicator of the stocks traded on the exchange

Understanding the São Paulo Stock Exchange

The São Paulo Exchange was founded in 1890 in São Paulo, Brazil, one of the country's largest and cosmopolitan cities. It was commonly referred to as BOVESPA, an acronym for its Brazilian name, Bolsa de Valores de São Paulo. It is one of five exchanges in the country and among the largest in the Americas. It is one of the largest companies in market value, holding a prominent global position in the stock market industry.

The São Paulo Exchange merged with the Brazil Mercantile and Futures Exchange in 2008 to create the BM&F Bovespa Exchange. It is now known as B3 or Brasil, Bolsa, Balcão, and trades under ticker symbol B3SA3 on the Novo Mercado premium listing segment. The company has a strategic partnership with the CME Group, which allows the cross-listing of different financial products.

There are 351 companies that are listed on the exchange, four of which are foreign names. The value of share trading for equities on the exchange was $129 billion as of February 2021. Pre-market trading takes place between 9:45 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. Standard trading takes place between 10:00 a.m. and ends at 5:00 p.m. or 5:15 p.m., depending on the security.

Stocks listed on the exchange are represented by ticker symbols with five characters. The first four characters are capital letters that denote the name of the issuer. The last character is a number where:

  • 3 represents an ordinary stock
  • 4 is a preferred stock
  • 5 indicates preferred class A shares
  • 6 indicates preferred class B shares
  • 7 indicates preferred class C stock
  • 8 indicates preferred class D stock

Stock prices are quoted in Brazilian reals (BRL) to two decimal places and settle in T+2 days. Foreign companies may list their shares on the exchange using sponsored Brazilian Depositary Receipts (BDRs).

Interested in investing in Brazil? Consider a mutual fund, exchange-traded fund, or American depositary receipt.

Special Considerations

Ibovespa Index

Ibovespa is the primary performance indicator of the stocks traded on the exchange. Since its creation in 1968, the index acts as a benchmark for investors around the world interested in Brazilian equities.

A total of 82 companies were listed on the index as of April 19, 2021. The Ibovespa is weighted on a market value of free float and is reconstituted every quarter. It methodology. It accounts for about 80% of the number of trades and the financial volume of the capital markets.

Commitment to Sustainability

B3 is committed to sustainability. It was the world's first stock exchange to adhere to the Global Compact in 2004. The company is also a member of the U.N. Global Compact Brazilian Committee. Since 2017, the exchange acted as the vice president of the Global Compact’s Brazilian Committee.

Global Compact is a United Nations initiative that aims to mobilize the international business community in the adoption of its business practices, fundamental and internationally accepted values regarding human rights, labor relations, the environment, and corruption prevention. The Global Compact stipulates that companies report their progress annually, as regards the Ten Principles of the Global Compact, through a Communication on Progress (CoP) on the Global Compact’s international website.

Article Sources

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  1. World Federation of Exchanges. "Equity - Domestic market capitalisation (USD millions)." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  2. CME Group. "CME Group Strategic Partnership with B3." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  3. B3. "About." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  4. B3. "Trading Hours." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  5. B3. "Equities." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  6. B3. "BDRs - Brazilian Depositary Receipts." Accessed March 24, 2021.

  7. B3. "Bovespa Index (Ibovespa)." Accessed April 19, 2021.

  8. B3. "At B3." Accessed March 24, 2021.