Wall Street: Happy Birthday, Big Board

As befits an institution that began business under a colonial buttonwood tree,* the venerable New York Stock Exchange now observes only every 25th birthday. For its 150th anniversary in 1942, trading halted one hour. It was a desultory day, with only 216,620 shares traded, and the Dow-Jones industrials ended up at 98.65.

Last week the exchange celebrated its 175th year, and things were considerably different. Trading stopped for a mere 13 minutes to mark the event, the day saw 9,560,000 shares traded, and the Dow, although off 3.56 points, finished at 882.24, a level no one would have predicted 25...

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