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US exchanges continued to compete for IPOs in 2017, as NYSE and Nasdaq showcased their strengths.

Strong rebound for US exchanges

US-listed IPOs had a great 2017, reaching $49.4bn via 189 deals. Volume doubled compared to 2016 ($24.3bn via 111 deals) and was 27% higher than 2015 ($36.2bn via 174 deals). NYSE and Nasdaq were the two major US stock exchanges hosting these IPOs, and each has its own strengths by sector.

However, the top sector by volume in 2017 was up for grabs—technology, with $12.4bn via 37 deals. Nasdaq was the go-to exchange for tech companies before the dot-com bubble. Since then, NYSE has been gaining market share by attracting more mature tech companies. In 2017, both exchanges saw 18 tech IPOs, but NYSE had a total volume of $9.9bn compared to only $2.4bn on the Nasdaq.

NYSE led by volume

NYSE continued to be the top exchange by total volume, reaching $32.1bn in 2017 (via 77 deals) compared to $15.7bn on Nasdaq. It was the fifth consecutive year for NYSE to lead by volume.

A large boost came from cross-border IPOs, which have heavily favored NYSE. It continued to attract the highest IPO volume coming into the US in 2017, reaching $6.9bn (via 19 deals)—almost five times the Nasdaq volume ($1.4bn via 15 deals). NYSE has led cross-border IPO volume every year with 2015 the only exception (NYSE with $1.2bn via 4 deals versus Nasdaq with $2.0bn via 18 deals).

NYSE was also the favored exchange for financial sponsor–related IPOs. Such deals listed in the US rebounded to $19.8bn via 51 deals in 2017, compared to $11.0bn via 32 deals in 2016 and $15.3bn via 51 deals in 2015. Of 2017 sponsor-related IPO volume, NYSE captured 72.5%, which is in line with the average of 68.8% in the past decade.


IPO volume ranking by US exchange
 FY Tech Finance  Healthcare Cross-border FS* 
 2016  Nasdaq Nasdaq Nasdaq NYSE NYSE
 2017 NYSE Nasdaq Nasdaq NYSE NYSE

Nasdaq led by activity

While larger deals went to NYSE, Nasdaq was the top exchange by activity in 2017 (110 deals versus 77 on NYSE). It was also the fifth consecutive year it led by activity.

The healthcare sector continued to pick Nasdaq over NYSE as its favorite IPO exchange. In 2017, $3.6bn via 39 healthcare deals priced on Nasdaq compared to just $225m via 2 deals on NYSE. It has consistently outperformed NYSE on healthcare IPOs for the past 3 years. Finance was another strong sector for Nasdaq. It reached $7.6bn via 35 deals in 2017 (versus $4bn via 14 deals on NYSE).

-Written by Andy Ye, Dealogic Research


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Data source: Dealogic, as of January 11, 2018

*FS = financial sponsor