What it is:
Market Surveillance is a unit of the NASDAQ stock exchange whose function is to ensure that all trading is conducted in a compliant manner.
How it works (Example):
The Market Surveillance unit of the NASDAQ stock exchange is responsible for monitoring trading activity. Market Surveillance seeks to catch and examine unlawful and unethical activities connected with trading that compromises the security and fairness of NASDAQ trading.
Why it Matters:
The NASDAQ exists as a network of traders connected by numerous computers in multiple locations. Without a single physical location, it is easier for traders to potentially engage in illicit trading practices. The Market Surveillance department follows trading on an ongoing basis to search for suspicious trading patterns and procedural gaps.