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This paper analyses the role of (stock and derivative) exchanges as powerful actors in global finance. While most IPE accounts of exchanges analyse ‘exchanges as marketplaces’ and focus on equity market trading, they miss how exchanges have fundamentally transformed in the last 25 years. Through marketisation, internationalisation and digitisation, the business model of exchanges has fundamentally changed and led to the emergence of global exchange groups that dominate the exchange industry (CME, ICE, LSE, Cboe, Nasdaq and Deutsche Börse). Thereby, exchanges transformed from national marketplaces to global providers of financial infrastructures. They control the infrastructures that enable the functioning of capital markets: from market data, indices, financial products, trading platforms to post-trading activities such as clearing, exchanges create the rules according to which market transactions take place. This provision of financial infrastructures enables them to shape capital markets and represents a source of structural power, as exchanges potentially influence the actions of companies, investors and states entangled with these infrastructures. By shedding light on exchanges and their changed role and activities within capital markets, this paper makes a case for including exchanges as powerful actors into IPE analyses of global finance and for more closely analysing the structural power of (financial) infrastructure providers in the global economy.
Petry, J. (2020). From National Marketplaces to Global Providers of Financial Infrastructures: Exchanges, Infrastructures and Structural Power in Global Finance. New Political Economy, 1–24. https://doi.org/10.1080/13563467.2020.1782368