The Figaro newspaper on 20 March published a thorough audit of France. Very interesting if only that it doesn’t seem to scream out what is needed to change around the situation (stagnant growth, etc.). While reading the audit, I came across stats on various stock markets. Two notable facts were illustrated (source FIBV, Euronext): in 2005, the Tokyo stock market overtook the NYSE for number of companies quoted and the gap widened more in 2006. London remains the exchange with the largest number of quoted companies. (The liquidity of the NYSE remains, however, far and away the highest, with three times more transactions than even London, and saw a skyrocketing acceleration in the volume of transactions since 2003). The other fact was that Paris has two times as many quoted companies as Germany… possibly related to the fact that German companies might be more prone to go with the other Anglo exchanges. Then again, it may all be rather moot because of the merger of NYSE with the various stock exchanges in Europe, including Paris, this Spring… at which point NYSE will shoot above the London SE in terms of number of companies listed.

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