What Is the American Stock Exchange?

We all know about the major US stock exchanges, but how much do you know about the smaller ones? The American Stock Exchange, or the AMEX, was once the second-largest stock exchange in the US. It was established back in 1908 as the New York Curb Market Agency. In fact, it was called this until 1953 when it was renamed the American Stock Exchange. By then, it trailed only the New York Stock Exchange in terms of size by trading volume. 

American Stock Exchange Background

American Stock Exchange
Photo by Aditya Vyas on Unsplash

The American Stock Exchange changed hands several more times over the decades.

In 2008, it was acquired by NYSE Euronext, and it was renamed to how we know it today: the NYSE American exchange. Still haven’t heard of it?

Not to worry, the NYSE American is much different from the NYSE or NASDAQ.

It offers trading in over 8,000 stocks for emerging companies. This is similar to how the AMEX started as an exchange that introduced new trading products and asset classes. Another interesting feature is that there are plenty of Canadian companies that use the NYSE American exchange to access US investors. 

What Are the Listing Requirements?

Each stock exchange has its own specific listing requirements for companies.

For example, the NASDAQ requires the stock to trade over $4.00 per share to be considered for a listing.

The NYSE American has several different standards to meet depending on the situation of the company.

Some factors that are taken into account are pre-tax income, market cap, a minimum share price, and even the public shareholder’s equity. 

Keep in mind that even if the company has reached all of the listing requirements, the NYSE American can still deny the application. If the company does manage to pass through the screening, it will need to pay a fee of anywhere between $50,000 to $70,000 USD to list.

Remember that these are for the initial listing. Most exchanges also require the company to maintain a level of performance to remain trading on the American stock exchange as well. 

What Are Some NYSE American Stocks?

Chances are there will not be a lot of stocks you recognize on the NYSE American exchange. It’s important to note that stocks that trade on the NYSE American exchange are not penny stocks or OTC stocks.

They generally have smaller market caps and share prices and are from emerging industries like biotech. Don’t worry if you do not recognize these stocks, we had to look them up as well!

American Stock Exchange Stocks: Stereotaxis (NYSEAMERICAN: STXS)

American Stock Exchange

Stereotaxis is in the medical equipment industry and was established in St, Louis, Missouri.

It is not just regular medical equipment this company makes though, as it is in the emerging market of robotic surgeries.

The company has performed hundreds of thousands of different procedures around the world.

It works together with the Fuwai Central China Cardiovascular Hospital which is the first hospital in China to establish a robotic electrophysiology program using equipment from Stereotaxis.

So far, Stereotaxis’ equipment has received regulatory approval in the US, the European Union,  and of course, China. 

American Stock Exchange Stocks: Camber Energy Inc (NYSEAMERICAN: CEI)

Some of you might remember Camber as one of the more popular meme stocks from last year. Camber Energy caught the attention of meme investors and rode the wave up to its 52-week high price of $4.89.

The stock crashed hard after that and is currently trading for just over $0.80 per share. Camber Energy certainly had its day in the sun, but it was clearly just the flavor of the month for meme traders.

The stock is barely mentioned on Reddit’s r/WallStreetBets these days, and the stock has not come close to its highs since October. 

Zomedica Corp (NYSEAMERICAN: ZOM)

Another former meme stock, Zomedica was supposed to be the company that changed the vet industry forever. The company’s Truforma platform was believed to be a game-changer in adrenal disease testing. It launched last year and hasn’t done much in sales since then.

In fact, the company hasn’t done much to move the needle either. The only noteworthy thing it did was acquire another company called PulseVet. The stock is down over 80% since its highs and doesn’t look like it will rebound anytime soon.. 

What are some Other US Stock Exchanges?

Unless you trade in these stocks, the everyday investor does not generally visit these other exchanges. Is there a reason they exist?

Of course! Companies have to trade somewhere, especially if they don’t meet the listing requirements of the other exchanges. Let’s take a look at the other major US exchanges that you can invest in today!

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

The New York Stock Exchange is the largest stock exchange by market cap in the world. While you might think that the NASDAQ is bigger now with big tech stocks, the NYSE is full of blue-chip stocks like banks that can offset that value.

As of 2021, the NYSE had a total market cap of $26 trillion. The NYSE was founded back in 1792 and is traditionally what people refer to as Wall Street. 

Here’s another fact that most people don’t know: the NYSE is owned by a company that trades on the exchange. Yes, the Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE) owns the NYSE and the NYSE American index as well. T

he NYSE is the mecca of stock markets. While it might one day be passed in value by the NASDAQ, the NYSE will always be the center of the American stock exchange.

NASDAQ 

The NASDAQ was established in 1951 and like the NYSE, is also based in New York City. In its short period of existence, the NASDAQ has nearly caught up to the NYSE in market cap. As of 2021, the NASDAQ had a cumulative market cap of just over $19 trillion.

It is the home of many of the world’s largest tech companies, including Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL), and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT). 

The NASDAQ is an acronym that stands for National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations. As this suggests, the NASDAQ was the world’s first electronic stock market. In 2002, the NASDAQ itself became a publicly-traded company, under the ticker symbol (NASDAQ: NDAQ).

It seems like it is only a matter of time until the NASDAQ surpasses the NYSE as the largest in the world. 

Over the Counter Markets (OTC)

The OTC markets, also known as the Pink Sheets, is an American stock exchange established in 1913. Like the NYSE and NASDAQ, it also operates out of New York City.

The OTC is widely known as a volatile market as it deals mostly in penny stocks. These are the true definition of penny stocks as well, with a lot of companies trading for a penny or less per share. 

A little-known fact about the OTC markets is that it is also home to plenty of ADRs or American Depository Receipts. These are stocks of foreign companies that trade on the US stock market to access American investors.

This is a very popular way for Chinese and European companies to list in America. The volatility and risk in the OTC markets aren’t always from the stocks it holds. It is more because the markets are largely unregulated by agencies like the SEC. This makes the OTC stocks more prone to scams and pump and dump schemes. 

NYSE Arca 

Yet another subsidiary of the NYSE Group, the NYSE Arca exchange is actually based out of Chicago. This exchange used to be called the ArcaEX which was an abbreviation for the Archipelago Exchange.

This exchange offers both stocks and options, but it has come to be known as being an ETF-driven market. Many of the top ETFs trade on the NYSE Arca market, including those from Vanguard and iShares. 

Is The NYSE American Risky to Invest In?

While it remains a step or two above the OTC markets in terms of regulations, the NYSE American market is riskier to invest in. This is especially true when you compare it to the NYSE or NASDAQ exchanges.

The NYSE American typically houses emerging companies which are usually smaller and come with more risk. The NYSE American stocks listed above certainly would not fall under successful investments. 

That does not mean you shouldn’t consider the NYSE American index for investing. Like with any investment, you should always research the company and the stock. Do not blindly follow anyone that is telling you to invest in an emerging company.

I am sure stocks like Camber Energy and Zomedica looked like good investments at one point. So the answer is probably yes. Compared to the bigger exchanges, the NYSE American is certainly riskier. But like any market, if you do enough research, you can find some diamonds in the rough. 

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