NYSE is exploring the possibility of round-the-clock trading of assets

NYSE is exploring the possibility of round-the-clock trading of assets
Photo by Adam Nowakowski / Unsplash

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is contemplating a significant transition towards 24-hour trading, reflecting a potential paradigm shift in the traditional market operations. This initiative, as reported by the Financial Times, has garnered some support among market participants, signaling a willingness to adapt to evolving trading demands.

A recent survey conducted by the NYSE's analytics department investigated the feasibility of operating on a 24/7 basis. Currently, the NYSE operates five days a week from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM EST, but the changing landscape of global finance and the continuous nature of cryptocurrency markets are challenging this schedule.

The possibility of a 24-hour trading cycle was considered due to the influence of the cryptocurrency markets, which operate non-stop, and the precedent set by various retail brokers, including Robinhood Markets and Interactive Brokers, who offer around-the-clock access to stocks on weekdays. These brokers handle transactions internally or through over-the-counter platforms outside of the traditional market hours.

"The world has changed post-pandemic, and with the around-the-clock trading of cryptocurrencies, the infrastructure and support are now there to enable trading at any time," stated the CEO of the over-the-counter platform Blue Ocean.

However, the demand for night-time trading, while present, is met with challenges such as relatively low liquidity, according to one broker. An expert in the field cautioned that operating in a 24-hour mode would require a substantial staffing solution, highlighting a fundamental difference between decentralized crypto exchanges and traditional exchanges like the NYSE, which are directly regulated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Any operational changes, including extended trading hours, would require the approval of regulators, emphasizing the complexity of transitioning to a non-stop trading environment. The NYSE, founded in 1792, remains the world's largest stock exchange by trade volume and market capitalization, hosting securities from over 4000 companies.

This move by the NYSE reflects a broader trend in global financial markets. For example, the London Stock Exchange (LSE) announced it will start trading exchange-traded notes (ETN) based on bitcoin and Ethereum in May 2024, indicating a growing integration of digital assets into traditional financial platforms.