Friday 15 December 2017

Celebrations for 25th anniversary of London’s Big Bang

Peter Cripps

HUNDREDS of people will today celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Big Bang, which paved the way for London to be transformed into one of the biggest financial centres in the world.

A charity fundraising party dedicated to all those who worked on the trading floor of the London Stock Exchange will be held this evening at Drapers' Hall, on Throgmorton Avenue in the City of London, to mark tomorrow's anniversary.

The Big Bang on October 27, 1986, changed the City forever by deregulating the industry and opening it up for rapid expansion.

It also marked the end of "open outcry" trading as dealers swapped the bustling trading floor for computer screens and telephones.

Fixed commission charges were scrapped, reducing the cost of investing and making it easier for small private investors to buy stocks and shares.

The strict separation of jobbers - the middlemen - and stockbrokers was also abolished.

Previously, the City was an old boys' network where everyone knew their place but it became a more open and fluid environment where competition was fierce and mergers and acquisitions flourished.

The financial industry boomed after the Big Bang. The total value of equities traded rose from £161 billion in 1986 to £1.1 trillion in 2010 and the UK became increasingly dependant on tax revenues from the City.

Today's event will be held near the former home of the stock exchange, which moved to Paternoster Square in 2004.

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