The American Stock Exchange has a long and colorful history. Originally known as "curbstone brokers," the ancestors of today's NYSE American and NYSE American Options market professionals traded out in the street in all kinds of weather – in the rain and snow, and in the dog days of summer.

The curbstone brokers were open and inclusive, independent and tough. They took a chance on emerging industries, invested in smaller companies, and seized new investment opportunities. Providing a robust market for entrepreneurial growth companies, the Amex helped a large segment of corporations to grow and prosper. Over the course of two centuries, the Amex has been at the forefront of the U.S. financial markets serving its listed corporations and investors alike.

NYSE welcomed the historic American Stock Exchange into its group of exchanges in 2008. This union significantly enhanced NYSE's scale in U.S. options, exchange traded funds (ETFs), closed-end funds, structured products and cash equities. In addition, the combined company:

  • Enables NYSE to operate a compelling dual market structure making available to all customers the choice of price-time priority on NYSE Arca and the Amex's traditional market-maker model;
  • Provides additional volume to NYSE's robust U.S. options business;
  • Operates a third, complementary U.S. cash equities exchange, in addition to the NYSE and NYSE Arca;
  • Strengthens NYSE Arca's leadership position in ETF listing and trading;
  • and
  • Offers a leading venue for listing and trading closed-end funds and structured products.