US Stocks are typically only listed on one exchange, generally NYSE or NASDAQ. There have been some in the past that were listed on both exchanges, but seems like that isn't something companies do anymore.

I am trying to learn more about exchanges and markets and was looking in depth at the mechanics behind IEX; what is the difference between being listed on an exchange and simply trading on an exchange?

For example, IEX was approved to become a listing exchange, but their only "listed" company IBKR left recently to go back to the NASDAQ and IEX has since shuttered their corporate listings product line.

IBKR could trade on the IEX before, during, and after it was "listed" on the IEX, so I'm really not sure what the difference or significance today is regarding being officially listed on an exchange and simply trading is? I know that each exchange has its own rules and regulations to being listed with it, but other than that (ex NYSE has more stringent requirements), is there any significance? There's nothing that limits what exchanges a US stock can trade on in the US (provided it is registered with the SEC).


Generally, a stock that is described as 'listed' is a stock that meets the requirements of the top tier exchange/market. Other stocks that are bought and sold on a second- or third-tier market are not described as listed, but often simply referred to as being 'traded' or 'quoted' on that exchange. (Technically, all public stocks are quoted/traded.) If I remember correctly, the UK food company 'Weetabix' (still in existence) was a company traded on OFEX, and not the main London Stock Exchange, and so was never referred to as a listed company. (By the way, Weetabix chose to be so traded, and it did not mean that the company was in any way substandard !) The company was bought by private equity groups in 2003, then by China's 'Bright Food' in ~2013, then by US's 'Post Holdings' in 2017.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.