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Screenshot: Axios Events

The priority in reopening the NYSE trading floor was preventing a COVID-19 outbreak, Stacey Cunningham, NYSE president, told Axios' Dan Primack on Tuesday during a virtual event.

The big picture: For the first time in the exchange's 228 years, the NYSE announced on March 18 that it would temporarily close its trading floors to move to fully electronic trading on March 23.

What she's saying: "Our goal is to prevent an outbreak from occurring, not a single case. It's very possible that we would have a single case on the trading floor because there still is a pandemic," she said.

  • Cunningham said the reopening on May 26 was small, and they've since been scaling up, implementing social distancing guidelines and using personal protective equipment as precautions.
  • "We want to make sure we have protections in place that can responsibly mitigate that risk of it spreading. ... But we might need to take measures to scale backwards."
  • "I am hopeful that we won't need to get to a place where we would need to close the floor, but we certainly are prepared we could do that again and it was a pretty seamless process," she added.

Go deeper: New York Stock Exchange to temporarily close trading floor due to coronavirus

Editor's note: This story has been corrected to reflect that the New York Stock Exchange floor temporarily closed on March 23 to fully electronic trading (not March 12).

Go deeper

House will not hold votes until Sept. 14 unless stimulus deal is reached

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) announced Monday that the House will not hold any floor votes until Sept. 14, though members will remain on 24-hour notice to return to Washington in case a deal on coronavirus stimulus is reached.

Why it matters: Democrats and the Trump administration remain deadlocked and have not met since negotiations broke down without a deal on Friday.

Biden Cabinet confirmation schedule: When to watch hearings

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Jan. 16 in Wilmington, Delaware. Photo: Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

The first hearings for President-elect Joe Biden's Cabinet nominations begin on Tuesday, with testimony from his picks to lead the departments of State, Homeland and Defense.

Why it matters: It's been a slow start for a process that usually takes place days or weeks earlier for incoming presidents. The first slate of nominees will appear on Tuesday before a Republican-controlled Senate, but that will change once the new Democratic senators-elect from Georgia are sworn in.

Kamala Harris resigns from Senate seat ahead of inauguration

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Photo: Mason Trinca/Getty Images

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris submitted her resignation from her seat in the U.S. Senate on Monday, two days before she will be sworn into her new role.

What's next: California Gov. Gavin Newsom has selected California Secretary of State Alex Padilla to serve out the rest of Harris' term, which ends in 2022.