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22nd Anniversary Of Warsaw Stock Exchange

Date 16/04/2013

  • The first trading session in shares on the WSE took place on 16 April 1991.
  • Today, 22 years later, the WSE is the largest exchange in Central and Eastern Europe.
  • The day before its anniversary, the WSE successfully completed the most important technology project in many years: the implementation of the new trading system UTP.

The founding deed of the Warsaw Stock Exchange was signed on 12 April 1991. Four days later, in the former headquarters of the Polish United Workers’ Party, the first trading session took place with the participation of seven brokerage houses, listing shares of five companies. During the day, 112 buy and sell orders were placed and the total turnover on the exchange was PLN 1,990 or around US$ 2,000.

Today, 22 years later, the WSE is the largest national financial instruments exchange in Central and Eastern Europe by capitalisation of listed companies (EUR 128.5 billion)[1] and by total value of trading in shares (EUR 45.5 billion in the last 12 months);[2] it is also one of the fastest growing exchanges in Europe. According to the most recent IPO Watch Europe report which presents the number and value of initial public offerings (IPO) on European exchanges, the WSE was Europe’s second biggest market by the number of IPOs and third by the value of IPOs in Q1 2013, ranking after the LSE Group exchanges and the Deutsche Boerse.[3]

Just like 22 years ago, the prevailing objective of the WSE is to improve effective capital flows by providing companies with opportunities of raising growth capital and to offer increasingly diverse investment opportunities to asset managers and individual investors.

The Main Market now lists 437 companies and NewConnect lists 439 companies. Five companies were newly listed on the first trading session on 16 April 1991. The 100th company was newly listed on the WSE six years later (on 21 May 1997). Today, the Warsaw Stock Exchange lists 876 companies, nearly 100 more than a year ago. In addition to the regulated market for shares and derivatives and the alternative stock market NewConnect, the Exchange also operates Catalyst, a market designed for corporate, co-operative and municipal bonds. An important part of the WSE Group’s business is also development of a commodity market.

On 15 April 2013, the day before its anniversary, the WSE successfully completed the most important technology project in many years: the implementation of the new trading system UTP.

The WSE Group operates trading in financial and commodity market’s instruments and generates revenues in seven markets (Main Market, NewConnect, Derivatives Market, Catalyst, Treasury BondSpot Poland, Structured Instruments Market, Commodity Market).

[1] FESE, capitalisation of domestic companies, as at the end of March 2013.
[2] FESE, April 2012 – March 2013.
[3] PwC, IPO Watch Europe, Q1 2013 report.