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Source: Encyclopedia of Banking & Finance (9h Edition) by Charles J Woelfel
(We recommend this as work of authority.)

In its broadest sense, any interaction of buying and selling interest for goods or services.  Although a market is usually thought of as a locality, it is rather the buying and selling interest that establishes a market and thus the determination of quotations or prices of actual transactions in goods and services.

There are several classifications of markets.  The chief classification is that based upon the kinds of media traded in, e.g., stock market, produce market, grain market, money market, cotton market, livestock market, real estate market, wood market, lumber market, foreign exchange market, etc.  Markets may be formal and organized or informal and descentralized.  When organized, they are usually called exchanges or boards, e.g., the NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE, CHICAGO BOARD OF TRADE, COMMODITY EXCHANGE, INC., Minneapolis Grain Exchange.  The markets for unlisted securities, foreign exchange, real estate, etc., are decentralized.  Organized markets are closed, while decentralized markets are open, i.e., trading in the former is limited to members of the exchange, while in the latter trading is open to any buyers and sellers.

Markets may be classified in accordance with the breadth of the demand for various products, e.g., world, national and local markets.  With the perfection of means of communication, many commodities now enjoy a world market, e.g., internationals among securities, sterling and dollar exchange, wheat, cotton, wood etc.  A national market is one in which the goods or services are traded in by buyers and sellers coming from any part of the country.  A local market is one in which the goods or services are exchanged only within a restricted area.

Markets are primary and secondary.  A primary market is one located in a center of consumption where large quantities are available for distribution and stored in warehouses, elevators, or railroad or shipping terminals.  Chicago is thus a primary market for wheat and other grains.  A secondary market is one near the points of production.  It is the place where commodities are collected and not distributed.  A market in a small prairie town, for example, would be a secondary market.  As applied to securities, primary markets refers to the markets for new issues of securities publicly offered through investment bankers (the capital market), and secondary markets refers to the markets for already outstanding securities after such issues have been publicly floated.  In U.S. security market practice, security exchanges and over-the-counter markets in already outstanding issues are thus secondary markets in this sense.  Primary markets in securities may also refer to those maintained by the principal firms maintaining or making such markets, other firms, trading on such primary markets, are thus said to be secondary in over-the-counter practice.

Markets may also be said to be continuous or discontinuous, not because transactions occur every second, but because the facilities are available continuously or discontinuously for trading.  A trading session of the New York Stock Exchange, for example, provides a continuous market for listed stocks and bonds.  The market for unlisted stocks and bonds may be continuous.  An AUCTION is a discontinuous market.

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