Wall Street: Volume & Vigor

When the closing bell sounded at the New York Stock Exchange last Friday, floor brokers ended one of the more somnolent sessions of 1967: a mere 8,130,000 shares changed hands. Only last year, volume like that would have meant headlines. But no longer—for Friday's bell also rang out the biggest, fastest trading quarter in Big Board history.

So far this year, 615 million snares have been traded on the exchange, far outracing the previous record of 540 million shares traded in the first quarter of 1966. Average daily volume, now 9,900,000 shares, has jumped 30% over 1966's 7,500,000 shares. On...

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