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Stock and bond volume highest in NYSE history

NEW YORK -- Volume of more than 23.07 billion shares for 1984 was the highest in the New York Stock Exchange's 192-year history, surpassing the 1983 record year by almost one and a half billion shares.

But dollar volume of bond trading on the NYSE dropped to its lowest level since 1981, falling to the $6.9 billion mark.

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The $6,982,291,000 total was the first time bond volume dropped since 1979 and was 8 percent below 1983's record of $7,572,315,000.

For the more than 42.3 million people who own stocks, turnover on the NYSE floor, which has risen for the past seven years, totaled 23,071,031,447, up from its previous record of 21,589,576,997 shares in 1983.

Composite volume -- trading in NYSE-listed issues on the exchange floor and in outside markets -- came to 27,416,699,847 shares, well above the 25,358,852,472 traded the year before.

The most active day was Aug. 3 when 236,565,110 shares changed hands, surpassing the previous record set Nov. 4, 1982 when 149,385,480 shares were traded.

Volume topped the 200 million share mark twice during 1984, on Aug. 3 and on Aug. 6 when 203,046,720 shares were exchanged.

The most active week was that ending Aug. 10 when a record 754,608,714 shares were traded.

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The heaviest month was August when 2,527,524,003 shares were traded, just edging out the January total of 2,215,874,852. However, both were far above June 1983, last year's most active month, when only 1,974,031,673 shares crossed the tape.

Daily floor volume averaged an unprecedented 90.47 million shares, compared with 85.2 million shares in 1983.

Monthly turnover of about 1.90 billion was well ahead of last year's turnover of 1.77 billion shares.

By way of contrast, analysts noted that only 958 million shares were traded in the entire year of 1960.

Floor trading in 1984 topped 125 million shares in 16 sessions -- or every 16 operating days.

Floor trading in 1984 topped 100 million shares in 58 sessions -- or every 4.3 operating days. This topped the 41 sessions in 1983 when turnover exceeded this level.

'We look forward to the ability to handle share days exceeding 250 million,' John J. Phelan Jr., said NYSE chief operating officer.

'This year's volume was not surprising since volume usually begets volume, and since rising stock prices -- which have been an obvious market phenomenon over most of the past year -- traditionally have attracted large numbers of investors into the market,' he observed.

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The holidays and hot summer days of August played havoc with trading on the exchange as volume fell below 60 million shares during six trading sessions in 1984.

The slowest trading day of the year was on Columbus Day, Oct. 8, when 46,363,960 shares changed hands. In 1983 the slowest session was on Aug. 29 when 53,032,991 shares were traded.

Warrant volume for 1984 fell by more than 45 percent to 86,249,700 shares from the 157,481,500 in the preceding year.

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