A special report in this week's Business First looks at what it takes for a company to be traded on the NY Stock Exchange or NASDAQ.
The Buffalo region has 19 public companies with revenues over $1 million and only three that bring in more than $1 billion a year.
The report says being a public company means keeping track of new requirements, paying for audits, and registering financial information.
It says it's time consuming and expensive and can hurt small companies who can be overwhelmed by the process.
Many companies choose to avoid going public. The report says in 2000, there were more than 6,600 public companies in the U.S., traded on exchanges in which investors could buy stock. By 2008, that number dropped to less than 4,600. And in 2012, there were 3,687 public companies, about 3,000 less than 12 years ago.
In the past 12 years, about 100 companies have gone public with IPOs each year. Back in the 80s and 90s, there used to be more than 300 a year.
You can read more about the issue in this week's Business First.