Switch to ‘decimalization’ in stock pricing has saved institutional investors $133 million per month, study finds

Panchapagesan”Decimalization” – the pricing of stocks in dollars and cents instead of fractions – lauded by proponents to be a good thing for investors when it was adopted by the U.S. stock markets in early 2001, is under fire. Critics say it costs institutional investors big. But in a study co-authored by Venkatesh Panchapagesan at Washington University’s Olin School of Business, direct institutional trading costs appear to have declined by about 23 basis points (roughly 5 cents a share) after decimalization. In economic terms, this decrease translates to an average monthly savings of about $133 million in institutional trading costs, the study finds.