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What is the Bombay Stock Exchange?

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  • Written By: Harriette Halepis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 August 2018
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As one of the largest stock exchanges in the world, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) is well known to brokers and informed investors across the globe. This stock exchange is not only one of the largest on the planet, it is also one of the oldest exchange platforms throughout Asia. Even though the Bombay Stock Exchange is not the largest exchange in the world, it does have the most listed companies when compared to any other exchange.

The Bombay Stock Exchange has more than 4500 listed companies, and this number is rapidly expanding, making the exchange important throughout the globe. While those people who are not directly involved in finance may not know of the Bombay Stock Exchange, this entity has been in business since the early 1800s.

While the history of Bombay's stock exchange has long and interesting roots, this exchange wasn't always operated in the traditional manner. Beginning in 1830, the Bombay Stock Exchange opened its doors to bank and cotton stocks and shares, though this exchange was anything but traditional. The BSE began just outside of the Mumbai Town Hall where traders would gather to buy and sell the day's commodities beneath the shade of various banyan trees.

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In 1875, the exchange was formally listed as the "Native Share and Stock Brokers Association." Today, the Bombay Stock Exchange operates inside of an industrial building located at Dalal Street in Mumbai. Even though the BSE is not the only exchange in Asia, it is the one exchange where most companies within India can be found.

Those wishing to trade on the BSE should be aware that this exchange is closed on Saturdays and Sundays, and it is also closed on all Indian holidays. People who have an international interest in trading on the BSE should consult with a professional stock broker. While brokers can be rather expensive, trading on the BSE can be confusing. Thus, an international trader with experience trading on the BSE is worthwhile.

Also, taking the time to research the BSE 200 Index is a wise idea, since this index provides information about strong Asian companies. Within North America, the BSE is largely unknown, though this is beginning to change. Many professional traders believe that certain Indian technology companies may be worth investing in, and many North Americans have begun to shift trading attention towards technology companies listed on the BSE.

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