Australian Stock Exchange (ASX)

The Australian Stock Exchange Limited (ASX) operates Australia's national exchange for equities, derivatives, and fixed interest securities such as bonds. The exchange also provides comprehensive market information and data to a wide range of traders, brokers, and commissions.

History of the Australian Stock Exchange

The history of the Australian Stock Exchange starts with the six capital city exchanges that were established in Adelaide (1887), Brisbane (1884), Melbourne (1884), Hobart (1882), Perth (1889), and Sydney (1871).  Several smaller provincial exchanges were established to cater to the needs of the large number of mining companies in existence at the turn of the 20th Century.

From 1903 until 1937, these state stock exchanges began meeting on an informal basis.  By 1936, Sydney had taken the lead in formalizing the association, and in 1937 the Australian Associated Stock Exchanges (AASE) was established.  The formation of the AASE laid the groundwork for listing of companies, brokerage, and the operating rules of the stockbrokers and their firms.

On April 1, 1987, the Australian Parliament passed legislation forming the Australian Stock Exchange Limited (ASX).  Forming a national stock exchange brought together the six independent stock exchanges operating in the capital cities.

Facts and Figures

Approximately 2,082 companies are listed with the Australian Stock Exchange.  ASX claims to be the eighth largest equity market in the world, with 20.1 million equity trades taking place each month.  The combined market capitalization of the exchange is $1.31 trillion (USD) as of July 2016.

The five most actively traded companies on the ASX include KBL Mining, BassMetals, Walkabout, IOT Group, and Manasres.  The S&P/ASX 200 Index is recognized as the benchmark for the Australian equity market.  The S&P/ASX 200 is comprised of the S&P/ASX 100 plus an additional 100 stocks.   The index also forms the basis for the ASX Mini200 futures contract.

ASX Holiday Schedule

The ASX observes a total of ten or eleven holidays annually, most of which the exchange is either closed or closes early for the day.  The following table includes the most recent calendar of holidays for the exchange.

Australian Stock Exchange Holidays 2017

Holiday Date States Trading Day
New Year's Day January 2, 2017 All Closed
Australia Day January 26, 2017 All Closed
Good Friday April 14, 2017 All Closed
Easter Monday April 17, 2017 All Closed
ANZAC Day April 25, 2017 All Closed
Queen's Birthday June 12, 2017 All except WA Closed
Last Business Day before Christmas Day December 22, 2017 All Close Early
Christmas Day December 25, 2017 All Closed
Boxing Day December 26, 2017 All Closed
Last Business Day of the Year December 29, 2017 All Close Early

Note:  Close Early = Normal trading ceases at 14:10 Sydney time.

Australian Stock Exchange Holidays 2016

Holiday Date States Trading Day
New Year's Day January 1, 2016 All Closed
Australia Day January 26, 2016 All Closed
Good Friday March 25, 2016 All Closed
Easter Monday March 28, 2016 All Closed
ANZAC Day April 25, 2016 All Closed
Queen's Birthday June 13, 2016 All except WA Closed
Last Business Day before Christmas Day December 23, 2016 All Close Early
Christmas Day (Observed) December 26, 2016 All Closed
Boxing Day December 27, 2016 All Closed
Last Business Day of the Year December 30, 2016 All Close Early

Note:  Close Early = Normal trading ceases at 14:10 Sydney time.

ASX Market Phases / Trading Hours

The Australian Stock Exchange goes through a number of phases on any given trading day.  The particular market phase determines the type of action that may be taken for an order, which in turn affects how trading is conducted on that day.

ASX Trading Hours (Sydney Time)

Time Trading Phase
7:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. Pre-Opening
10:00 a.m. Opening
10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Normal Trading
4:00 p.m. - 4:15 p.m. Pre-Open prior to Closing
4:15 p.m. Closing Single Price Auction
4:15 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. After Hours Adjust
7:00 p.m. - 7:00 a.m. Enquiry

About the Author - Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) (Last Reviewed on August 30, 2016)