Helsinki Stock Exchange
Located in Helsinki in Finland, the Helsinki Stock Exchange saw its first transaction take place in 1912. For many years this stock exchange, known as Helsingin Pörssi in Finnish, was run as a ‘free form’ financial institution. However in 1984 it was converted into a cooperative and came under the joint ownership of a variety of banks, traders, companies and associations. The next big change in the history of the Helsinki Stock Exchange came in 1935 when an electro-mechanical trading board was introduced for the purpose of more efficient trading. This was replaced in 1990 by a new digital system known as the Helsinki Stock Exchange Automated Trading and Information System (HETI). The biggest advantage of the HETI system was that it allowed traders now in the trading room to perform transactions on equal terms with those who were in the trading room.
The basic form of the Helsinki Stock Exchange changed a number of times over the years. The most notable of these was probably the buying out of both other Finnish derivative exchanges which it merged with itself to become HEX. HEX later merged with several other corporations and groups to eventually become OM HEX which was subsequently renamed OMX. Since 3 September 2003, the Helsinki Stock Exchange has been a part of OMX and it is now officially known as NASDAQ OMX Helsinki. The actual stock exchange building is located at 14 Fabianinkatu in Helsinki, Finland. The main stock market index for the Helsinki Stock Exchange is OMXH25 which is a market value weighted index of the the top 25 most traded stock classes. Some companies currently listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange include Finair airlines, Finlandia Vodka, Cargotec, Kesko and Nokia.
Finland is a country with abundant forest resources, good technology and an excellent level of capital investments which means that it is able to enjoy a highly industrialized free-market economy. As with most developed, first-world countries, Finland’s biggest income comes from the services sector which contributes approximately 65.8% of the country’s GDP. The industry sector is the next biggest sector while the agriculture sector is tiny contributing to only about 2.8% of the country’s annual income. A very notable feature of this country is that it has a 0% poverty rate though it does have a 7.7% unemployment rate. Its biggest industries are telecommunication equipment, metal products, shipbuilding, pulp and paper manufacture, foodstuffs, copper refining, chemicals, textiles and clothing. It also enjoys a large amount of trade with Germany, Sweden, Russia, France and China.