over-the-counter market

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Over-the-Counter Market

Describing a security or trade that does not occur on an exchange. Very often, the OTC market includes securities that are very small and do not trade on an exchange because they do not meet market capitalization requirements. OTC securities may theoretically be traded informally (one may stand on a street corner and sell his/her stocks), but the term usually refers to securities traded through a dealer network.

over-the-counter market (OTC)

A widespread aggregation of dealers who make markets in many different securities. Unlike an exchange on which trading takes place at one physical location, OTC trading occurs through telephone or computer negotiations between buyers and sellers. Although stocks traded over the counter are often more speculative than listed stocks, virtually all government and municipal bonds and most corporate bonds are traded in the OTC market. See also National Quotation Bureau, OTC Bulletin Board, third market.

over-the-counter market (OTC)

a MARKET for corporate SHARES which have not obtained a full listing on the main STOCK MARKET. The UK's OTC market was abolished in 1992. See ALTERNATIVE INVESTMENT MARKET.