Polish capital market traditions go back to 1817, when the first state-organized exchange, the Warsaw Mercantile Exchange, was established in Warsaw.
The first trading took place in the Old Town Hall on 16 May 1817. In the first half of the 19th century mainly bills, debentures and bonds were traded, while share trading on a broader scale developed in the second half of that century.
In January 1873 the Warsaw Mercantile Exchange became the Warsaw Stock Exchange. During the 1870s there were already 16 listed companies. The Exchange constantly grew until the First World War. It was subject to the world crises of 1929, but recovered in the second half of the 1930s until the Second World War.
In 1938, there were 130 securities traded. The Exchange closed with the outbreak of the second World War. After 1945, trade on the Warsaw market was brought to a halt. Following the overthrow of Poland's former communist regime in 1989, the Warsaw Stock Exchange (GPW) was created as a joint-stock company on April 12, 1991 by the State Treasury.
The GPW began activity in its present form on 16 April 1991. On the first trading day only five stocks were listed, seven brokerages took part in the trading, and there were 112 buy and sell orders, with a turnover of only 1,990 złotys ($2,000).
Since 9 November 2010, GPW is a public company listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange.
On 29 September 2017, the index provider FTSE Russell announced the upgrade of Poland’s market status from emerging to developed. The decision will be effective in September 2018. Poland is the first Central and Eastern European economy to be upgraded to developed market status.
Today the GPW is the biggest securities exchanges in Central and Eastern Europe. There are 473 listed companies whose total value (capitalization) amounts to PLN 1,229,169.73 million (as of 29 June 2018).
The exchange organizes trading in financial instruments, including shares, bonds, rights, investment certificates and derivatives (futures contracts, options). The Warsaw Stock Exchange facilitates trading in financial instruments on two markets - the main market and NewConnect, a new market financing the growth of young companies with a large growth potential. GPW also operates Catalyst, Poland’s first comprehensive platform of trading in debt instruments issued by companies, local governments, and banks.
The Warsaw Stock Exchange is a member of the World Federation of Exchanges and the Federation of European Securities Exchanges.
Phone: +48 22 628 32 32
Fax: +48 22 628 17 54
Email: gpw [at] gpw.pl
Address: ul. Ksiazeca 4, 00-498 Warsaw, Poland