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Thomas A. James

Time to Crank up the Volume on Wall Street?

As market volatility vanishes and retail investors express lingering skepticism, equity trading volume on Wall Street remains barely above hushed tones.Volume, which is closely monitored by savvy market participants as a sign of conviction, has contracted in 36 of the past 39 months and is down another 15% from the same period in 2012.Despite the muted volume, traders and struggling exchange operators might want to brace for louder trading activities ahead as the global economy continues to recover, luring investors who may be forced to hop off the fence."I think it will be a long time before we see volumes like we saw in '08 and '09 -- and maybe never again. But markets don't stay placid forever," said Dan McMahon, head of institutional equity trading at Raymond James Financial (NYSE:RJF). "I do think volumes will rebound off these cyclical lows in the short to medium term."If the markets enjoy an uptick on the volume front, it could validate the recent rally that has lifted U.S. mark...

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