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LEAD: New York Stock Exchange shows strong start after going public.

NEW YORK, March 8 Kyodo

(EDS: UPDATING WITH CLOSING PRICE OF NYSE GROUP)

The New York Stock Exchange got off to a strong start Wednesday after making its debut as a publicly traded company, putting an end to its 213 years of history as a not-for-profit bourse.

The stock opened at $67 a share, up more than 4 percent from the closing price Tuesday of Archipelago Holdings Inc., which was acquired by NYSE Group Inc., and soared about 20 percent from the initial price to end at $80.00.

Trading in NYSE Group was brisk, with its trading volume exceeding 18 million shares.

The NYSE, the world's biggest stock exchange, transformed itself into a public company that is expected to seek to boost its operations by raising funds on the market and to serve as the core of a global reorganization of bourses.

NYSE Group Inc., the holding company of the NYSE, began trading at the Big Board on Wednesday.

NYSE chief executive John Thain has expressed a positive stance on its possible integration with other U.S. and European stock markets amid growing moves to reorganize among those bourses.

At the opening of the day's trading, Thain and other executives rang the opening bell to celebrate NYSE Group's debut. Thain later said the main tasks facing the company include seeking higher profits and reducing costs.

Nasdaq Stock Market Inc., the operator of the second largest U.S. stock market, has already acquired Instinet Group, the world's largest electronic stock exchange.

Ahead of going public, the NYSE completed the acquisition of its electronic rival Archipelago Holdings in a move to respond to rapidly growing electronic equity transactions.

The publicly traded NYSE is also aiming to boost trading in derivatives such as options and warrants as well as corporate bonds.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Date:Mar 13, 2006
Words:299
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