The New York Stock Exchange will partially reopen its trading floor on Tuesday, May 26, following two months of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The NYSE trading floor will begin a phased reopening on May 26….and look forward to welcoming home members of our Trading Floor community,” Stacey Cunningham, President of the New York Stock Exchange, tweeted on Thursday.
The NYSE closed its equities and options trading floors and moved to fully electronic trading from March 23 on a temporary basis. The closure of the historic trading floor came after two people tested positive for COVID-19.
The facilities that were temporarily closed included the NYSE equities trading floor in New York, NYSE American Options trading floor in New York, and NYSE Arca Options trading floor in San Francisco.
In a Wall Street Journal op-ed on Thursday, Cunningham said that the NYSE would reopen its facility the day after Memorial Day to “a subset of floor brokers” and with “vital security measures”.
The announcement comes as more states in the U.S. start to ease coronavirus-induced lockdowns and reopen their economies.
On Thursday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo expanded the state’s phased reopening to five regions. The regions in upstate and central New York are allowed to resume manufacturing, construction and agricultural operations as well curbside pickup at retail stores beginning Friday.
The NYSE president noted in the WSJ op-ed that the reopened NYSE trading floor will look different from the “iconic images” people have grown accustomed to seeing on television throughout the trading day.
Floor brokers will return to the trading floor in small numbers first and will be required to wear protective masks as well as follow strict social-distancing requirements.
Meanwhile, the “designated market makers” overseeing trading of the stock-exchange listed companies will largely continue to work remotely.
Cunningham said that all brokers and visitors to the NYSE will be required to avoid public transportation. They will be screened and have their temperatures taken at the entrance of the building.
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