LOS ANGELES — Listed trading volumes continued to erode in 2003 but declines were not as dramatic as the year before, according to data from Plexus Group Inc., Los Angeles.
Institutional trade value in exchange-listed stocks fell 11.2% in the 12 months ended Dec. 31, to $1.67 trillion, from $1.88 trillion at the end of 2002. In 2002, exchange-listed trading value declined 17%.
The value of institutional Nasdaq-listed trading slipped again last year, but dropped only 2.14% compared with a 38% drop in 2002. Trade value at the end of last year totaled $588 billion, down from $601 billion at the end of 2002.
"It's a reflection of the market itself," said David Hall, a managing director at Plexus, noting that the stock market, while having risen significantly in 2003, remains well off its 2000 peaks. "Institutions have really pulled back, and average daily volumes have come down."
The stock market recovery has also played a role in the leveling off of commission rates, which held steady at 4.1 cents per share for exchange-listed trading and 3.7 cents a share for Nasdaq-listed stocks.
"The decline in commissions appears to have abated and part of that has to do with the rise in asset values," Mr. Hall said. "People are paying a lower percentage of their assets" in commissions.