Countries with largest stock markets globally 2018

In 2018, stock markets in the United States accounted for over 53 percent of world stocks. The next largest country by stock market share was Japan, followed by the United Kingdom. The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the NASDAQ are the largest stock exchange operators worldwide.

What is a stock exchange?

The first modern publicly traded company was the Dutch East Industry Company, which sold shares to the general public to fund expeditions to Asia. Since then, groups of companies have formed exchanges in which brokers and dealers can come together and make transactions in one space. Stock market indices group companies trading on a given exchange, giving an idea of how they evolve in real time.

Appeal of stock ownership

Over half of adults in the United States are investing money in the stock market. Stocks are an attractive investment because the possible return is higher than offered by other financial instruments.

Distribution of countries with largest stock markets worldwide in 2018

Market share
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Release date

February 2019



Survey time period

Dec 31, 2018

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Statistics on "Stock exchanges"

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