NASDAQ and NYSE Bicker Over Facebook IPO: You, Sir, Are No Brad Pitt

Not this.

Mark Zuckerberg still hasn’t announced which stock exchange he wants to call home, but that hasn’t stopped NASDAQ and the New York Stock Exchange from sniping at each other in the press.

Their bitter rivalry is underscored by the fact that their business is “being eroded by other global exchanges and upstart electronic-trading venues,” reports the L.A. Times.

According to the World Federation of Exchanges, for example, the number of companies on the NASDAQ is down from 5,556 in 1996 to just 2,669 today. NYSE is facing a similar decline, dropping from 3,025 in 1999 to 2,308 today. Add to that the fact that electronic competitors like BATS and Direct Edge are encroaching on their trading volume. For example, the portion of trading that NYSE manages for companies listed on its own exchange dropped from 76 percent in 2006 down to 29 percent today.

That desperation is evident in the way the exchanges characterize their chances of getting the coveted FB ticker symbol.

The NYSE tries to get people to focus on its blue-chip listings and recent efforts to attract tech companies. Scott Cutler, who heads up NYSE’s listings business told the Times:

“The history would go toward Nasdaq, but the trend is toward the NYSE.”

The response from his NASDAQ counterpart Robert McCooey [emphasis ours]?

“Just because someone climbs to the highest mountain and shouts that they’re the home for technology doesn’t mean they’re the home for technology,” McCooey said. “Just because I could say ‘I’m 6 foot 2 and I look like Brad Pitt’ doesn’t mean it’s true.”

Zuck, you gotta decide soon. Can’t you see it’s tearing them apart?

NASDAQ and NYSE Bicker Over Facebook IPO: You, Sir, Are No Brad Pitt