History of Indian Stock Exchanges | NSE & BSE

There are two main stock exchanges in India; NSE (National Stock Exchange) & BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange)


           Established in 1875, the BSE is Asia’s first stock exchange and the world’s fastest stock exchange with a median trade speed of 6 microseconds. More than 5500 companies are publicly listed on the BSE, making it world’s No. 1 exchange in terms of listed members. BSE has a total market capitalization of 93,40,276 crore INR. There are 3,01,91,182 registered investors on BSE.

         The BSE Ltd, the oldest stock exchange in Asia had a very humble beginning under a Banyan Tree in Mumbai’s town hall. The stock exchange was started by four Gujaratis and one Parsi and gradually the group grew. As the number of brokers was continuing increasing the venue of their meeting changed many times. In 1874, the group finally moved to Dalal Street and in 1875 the group became an official organization known as The Native Share and Stockbrokers Association.

          By 1956, the BSE became the first stock exchange to be recognized by the government of India under the Securities Contracts Regulation Act.  By 1986, the BSE had developed the BSE SENSEX which made it easy for the BSE to measure the overall performance of the exchange. SENSEX, is a free-float market-weighted stock market index of 30 well-established and financially sound companies listed on Bombay Stock Exchange. The 30 component companies which are some of the largest and most actively traded stocks, are representative of various industrial sectors of the Indian economy. Since its inception in 1875, the BSE was an open-floor trading exchange, the BSE switched to an electronic trading system in 1995.

           This new automatic, screen-based trading platform called BSE On-Line trading (BOLT) currently has a capacity of 8 million orders per day. The BSE has also introduced the world’s first centralized exchange-based internet trading system to enable investors anywhere in the world to trade using the BSE platform.

          The stock market systems and processes are designed keeping in mind the importance of safeguarding market integrity, driving the growth of the Indian capital market and stimulating innovation and competition across all market segments. BSE is the first exchange in India and second in the world to obtain an ISO 9001:2000 certification.


          NSE is the biggest stock exchange in India and the third biggest in the world in terms of amounts of transactions, located in Mumbai. NSE was set up by a group of leading Indian financial institutions at the behest of the government of India to bring transparency to the Indian capital market. NSE offers trading, clearing and settlement services in equity, equity derivatives, debt and currency derivatives segments.

          NSE’s flagship index, the CNX Nifty,the 50 stock index, is used extensively by investors in India and around the world as a barometer of the Indian capital markets. The NIFTY 50 index is a free float market capitalisation weighted index. The NIFTY 50 covers 22 sectors of the Indian economy and offers investment managers exposure to the Indian market in one portfolio.

          NSE’s trading systems, is a state of-the-art application. It has an up time record of 99.99% and processes more than 450 million messages every day with sub millisecond response time. In 1994, when trading started, NSE technology was handling 2 orders a second. This increased to 60 orders a second in 2001. Today NSE can handle 1, 60,000 orders/messages per second, with infinite ability to scale up at short notice on demand, NSE has continuously worked towards ensuring that the settlement cycle comes down. On 13-Apr-2015, the market capitalisation  of NSE wasRs. 1,04,20,430 crores.

 (Source: BSE, NSE, SEBI)

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