Rome Exchange: the locations and the historical events
On the 3rd day of the 4th month of the French Republican Calendar (24 December 1802), the French Authorities established the Rome Chamber of Commerce and charged it with the task of supervising the exchange and the brokers. At that time, trading and price tracking were under the purview of a restricted group of bankers who made up the elite of the Roman commercial class. When the new Code of Commercial Laws came into effect in September 1809, the Chamber of Commerce and the Exchange were re-established under the new rules. When the French period came to a close, although the Chamber of Commerce ceased to exist, stockbrokers, bankers and moneychangers continued to meet. In 1831, the Chamber of Commerce was re-established and the following year a regulation was issued providing for the institution of a committee to oversee the exchange and the brokers. In September 1836, the Chamber of Commerce, which had been reorganised the previous year, issued new regulations for the Rome Exchange: they established that the Exchange was to be headed by a member of the Chamber of Commerce with the title of Deputy of the Stock Exchange. After the unification of Italy, when the Codes of Commercial Laws and the brokerage laws began to be enforced, the institutional development of the Rome Exchange resembled more closely that of the other Italian exchanges. Rome has been the seat of the National Association of Stockbrokers since 1963 when the professional association was founded.
In 1812, a list of brokers and bankers at the Rome Exchange showed nineteen names, a number that gradually fell until the mid-1800s. In 1925, the number of stockbrokers authorised to work at the Rome Stock Exchange was set at thirty-nine. During the 20th century, the number of stockbrokers ranged between 40 and 70, reaching its peak at the end of the 1960s.
The Rome marketplace specialised during the 20th century in the trading of public debt securities and shares in real estate companies. During the years following the Second World War, in spite of Milan's strong ability to attract investors, the Rome Stock Exchange held its own as the number two Italian marketplace, with volumes well beyond those in the other cities: a survey conducted in 1976 by the Senate revealed that the Rome Stock Exchange handled 12% of the shares and 17.2% of the government securities traded in Italy.
The first place used for meetings between Roman bankers and brokers during the Napoleonic period and in the years immediately following it was the Archiginnasio at the Sapienza University. Later, during the 1920s, meetings were held in Palazzo Valentini. Starting from the last establishment of the Chamber of Commerce in 1831, the seat of the Stock Exchange was moved to the building belonging to the Chamber of Commerce in Piazza di Pietra, inside Hadrian's Temple. This building, which in 1879 underwent substantial renovations, continues to this day to house the headquarters of the Rome Chamber of Commerce.