Native Share and Stockbrokers Association
The Stock Exchange at Bombay was established in 1875 as the Native Share and Stockbrokers Association which has evolved over the decades into its present status as the premier Stock Exchange in India. It is one of the oldest in Asia having preceded even the Tokyo Stock Exchange which was founded in 1878. In the early days the business was conducted under the shade of a banyan tree in front of the town hall. The tree can still be seen in a corner of the Horniman Circle. In 1850 the Companies Act was passed and that heralded the commencement of the joint stock companies in India. The American Civil War of 1860 helped Indians to establish brokerage houses in Bombay. The leading broker at the time, Premchand Roychand, assisted in framing conventions, ground rules and procedures for trading which are respected even today. He was the first Indian broker who could speak and write in fluent English. The exchange was established with 318 members with a fee of Re. 1/-.