NYSE Will Temporarily Close Trading Floor After Two Employees Test Positive For COVID-19

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) has announced that it will temporarily close its trading floor beginning Monday, March 23, after two people tested positive for coronavirus at screenings earlier this week. According to CNBC, the NYSE will move to electronic trading on Monday.

Stacey Cunningham, the President of the NYSE, spoke about the move to remote trading and the precautions the NYSE put in place to avoid the coronavirus outbreak.

"We implemented a number of safety precautions over the past couple of weeks, and starting on Monday this week we started pre-emptive testing of employees and screening of anyone who came into the building."
Cunningham added that if additional testing was needed, people would be tested again and sent home, and would not have "access to the building."

Two of the screenings at the NYSE resulted in a confirmation of the coronavirus. Cunningham said that even though those two confirmed cases were sent home and have not been in the building - which has since been thoroughly cleaned - she feels that this situation is "reflective" of how quickly the coronavirus pandemic is evolving.

The three facilities that have temporarily shut their doors are the NYSE equities trading floor, the American Options trading floor, and the NYSE Arca Options trading floor in San Francisco.

New York Stock Exchange
Getty Images | Spencer Platt

This closure marks the first time in the stock exchange's history that its physical floor will be closed while all electronic trading will still continue. Despite this, Cunningham said that the move to electronic trading will not affect their markets, according to CNN.

"NYSE's trading floors provide unique value to issuers and investors but our markets are fully capable of operating in an all-electronic fashion to serve our participants."
She added that electronic trading will continue until the trading floors can be reopened.

The stock market has been severely impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. The Dow Jones fell over 1,800 points on Wednesday, hitting a low not seen since the inauguration of President Donald Trump in 2017. The drop comes amid fears of economic collapse amid the growing pandemic. As The Inquisitr reported earlier this month, several analysts said the coronavirus could plunge the globe into a recession after oil and stock prices plummeted.

Nigel Green, chief executive and founder of the deVere Group commented on the steep drop in oil prices and mass sell-off of stock.

"I now believe that it's almost inevitable that there will be a global recession this year."