History and Development

Shanghai is Mainland China’s first city to see the emergence of stocks, stock trading and stock exchanges. Stock trading started in Shanghai as early as the 1860s. In 1891, the Shanghai Share Brokers Association, an early form of stock exchange, was established in Shanghai. Later in the 1920s, with the founding of the Shanghai Securities Goods Exchange and the Shanghai Chinese Securities Exchange, Shanghai emerged as the financial center of the Far East, where both Chinese and foreign investors could trade stocks, bonds, and futures. In 1946, the Shanghai Chinese Security Exchange was renamed the Shanghai Securities Exchange Co., Ltd. Later in 1949, all securities trading venues were closed down.

Since 1980, China’s securities market has grown in tandem with the reform and opening up of the country and the development of the socialist market economy. In 1981, the offering of treasury bonds was resumed. In 1984, stocks and enterprise bonds were issued in Shanghai and other regions. On November 26, 1990, the Shanghai Stock Exchange (the Exchange) was established, and on December 19 of the same year, it started formal operations.

Under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council and the direct guidance of the CSRC, along with fervent support from all sectors of society, the Exchange makes it its mission to serve the nation’s reform and development initiatives. In line with the principles of rule by law, regulation, self-discipline and compliance, the Exchange has been committed to creating a transparent, open, reliable and efficient marketplace and fulfilling its frontline role in market organization, oversight and development over the past 20 plus years.


Left: The Shanghai Stock Exchange's original site - Astor House Hotel in the old financial street on the Bund.
Right: Mr. Zhu Rongji attending the opening ceremony of the Shanghai Stock Exchange. The event attracted more than 500 distinguished guests from home and abroad.

The Exchange's scope of business and functions include:

  • providing venues, facilities and services for centralized securities trading; formulating and revising business rules of the Exchange;
  • formulating and revising business rules of the Exchange;
  • reviewing and arranging for listing and trading of securities and making decisions on the securities' suspension, resumption, termination of listing and re-listing;
  • arranging transfers for non-public offering securities;
  • organizing and overseeing securities trading;
  • organizing and implementing innovation in trading instruments and trading mechanisms;
  • carrying out supervision of the members;
  • exercising supervision over listed companies and relevant persons who have information disclosure obligations;
  • exercising supervision over securities institutions' services of listing and trading of securities;
  • establishing or participating in the establishment of securities registration and clearing companies;
  • managing and releasing market information;
  • providing investor education and protection; and
  • other functions stipulated by laws, administrative regulations and permitted or authorized by the CSRC.


After 31 years of rapid development, the Exchange has grown into a comprehensive, open and service-oriented exchange. With a complete market structure, the Exchange provides products of stocks, bonds, funds and derivatives; has world class trading systems and communications infrastructure which can support the efficient and stable operation of the Shanghai securities market; and has an effective self-regulatory system which can ensure the regulated and orderly operation of the Shanghai securities market. With these advantages, the Shanghai securities market has grown rapidly both in its size and the number of investors, making the Exchange one of the most representative emerging capital markets. According to statistics of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), as of the end of 2020, the Exchange ranked 3rd, 4th and 2nd respectively in terms of total market capitalization, total turnover, and capital raised, becoming one of the top exchanges in the world.

Market Capitalization

Exchange USD tn Ranking
NYSE 26.2 1
Nasdaq - US 19.1 2
Shanghai Stock Exchange 7.0 3
Japan Exchange Group 6.7 4
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing 6.1 5

Capital Raised

Exchange USD bn Ranking
NYSE 135.4 1
Shanghai Stock Exchange 132.2 2
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing 96.3 3
Shenzhen Stock Exchange 82.4 4
Euronext 70.7 5


Exchange USD tn Ranking
Nasdaq - US 63.6 1
NYSE 26.4 2
Shenzhen Stock Exchange 17.8 3
Shanghai Stock Exchange 12.2 4
Japan Exchange Group 7.0 5

On November 5, 2018, Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a keynote speech at the inaugural China International Import Expo (CIIE), announcing that "[China will] launch a science and technology innovation board ('SSE STAR Market') and the pilot registration-based IPO system at the Shanghai Stock Exchange, support Shanghai's bid to become an international financial center and science and innovation hub, and steadily improve the foundations of the domestic capital market." All of these initiatives help strengthen the country's multi-level capital market system, make the capital market more effective at supporting the real economy, and promote Shanghai as a center for international finance and innovation. They have also charted a viable course by which the Exchange can improve market functions, institutional frameworks, and market inclusiveness. By design, the SSE STAR Market operates on a disclosure-driven, registration-based IPO system, and is committed to supporting sci-tech and innovative enterprises that align with national strategies, hold core and breakthrough technologies, and enjoy a high degree of market recognition. Under the leadership of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) and with the support of the Shanghai Municipal Government, the Exchange was able to develop the main frameworks, procedures, rules, and guidelines for the SSE STAR Market and the pilot registration-based IPO system in a mere four months. Following the publication of these documents and the necessary preparations, on June 13, 2019, at the opening ceremony of the 11th Lujiazui Forum, the SSE STAR Market made its official debut. And on July 22, 2019, the first group of 25 companies became listed for public trading, which marked the successful completion of the one of the major tasks in the reform of China's capital market. As of the end 2020, 215 companies have been listed on the SSE STAR Market with a total market cap of 3.3 trillion yuan. The total capital raised by the SSE STAR market amounts to 223.7 billion yuan.

Learn more about SSE STAR Market >>

Launch of the SSE STAR Market

Culture & Value

Our Motto

To connect global financial markets and build a world-leading exchange with utmost integrity and fairness.

Our Mission & Vision

  • To pool capital resources, to serve the real economy, investors and the national master plan;
  • To safeguard market transparency, fairness and justice, to facilitate efficient resource allocation both at home and abroad, to prevent market risks; and
  • To build a sound and efficient exchange that leads the industry and empowers the development of the country.

Our Core Values

Efficiency Transparency Prudency
Service Ambition Dedication