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How Kitchen Table Trading Changed the Face of Markets

The biggest surge in activity this year is happening off exchanges.

Work from home, trade from home.

Work from home, trade from home.

Photographer: E+/Getty Images

The past year has brought about a revolution in the public markets. With the pandemic and lockdowns turning everyone’s kitchen table into a trading desk, buying and selling has been moving from the New York Stock Exchange to Nasdaq to off-exchange venues. Meanwhile, the electronic trading boom isn’t just happening with equities, but credit too. Welcome to the new marketplace. 

Reddit’s WallStreetBets forum attracted millions of new subscribers in January. Online traders communicating there pushed up shares of GameStop Corp. in a bid to turn the tables on the hedge funds that were short-selling the video game retailer.