'Ludicrous' that exchanges open during storm

Storm clouds

The Northeast is bracing for a snowstorm of "potential historic" proportions , with New York and New Jersey declaring a state of emergency, but the stock exchanges in New York plan to be open Tuesday.

However, one trader called that plan "ludicrous."

"If the governor and mayor of New York City declare a state of emergency, that should cover everybody," Peter Costa, president of Empire Executions, said in an interview Monday with " Closing Bell ."

"That being said, we are going to be open and we are going to be ...as staffed as well as we can be under the circumstances."

He expects volumes to be down.

A blizzard warning has been issued by the National Weather Service for a 250-mile stretch of the Northeast, with the region expecting to get 1 to 3 feet of snow. More than 5,000 flights have been canceled, and Connecticut's governor has ordered a travel ban on the state's highways.

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Gordon Charlop, managing director and partner at Rosenblatt Securities, sees it differently than Costa.

"As a New Yorker I'm a little bit embarrassed that we're throwing in the towel so early," he countered.

"We're going to be here, lets' get it on. We think that should apply all around. Get the roads cleared. Don't tell me you can't get them cleared. You got trucks. You got people. Make it happen."

Intercontinental Exchange 's New York Stock Exchange unit, Nasdaq OMX Group and BATS Global Markets said their exchanges were expected to stay open for normal operating hours Tuesday.

The last time the markets were closed due to bad weather was when Superstorm Sandy hit the East Coast.

"These things are more complicated than bad weather. You have to make decisions based on a lot of factors," Charlop said.

For example, when the NYSE was closed during Sandy it had to do with connectivity issues between the exchange and other exchanges, he said.

"You have to factor in all the other players and make sure the markets are open and that they are fair and orderly. If only half the guys can make it here, then is that really what you want?" he said.

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While the exchanges planned to stay open, many businesses were not. However, one expert said he doesn't believe the storm will have a huge economic impact on the region.

"The fact that it's not happening on a weekend, the fact that it is happening at the end of January and it is winter after all, I think the overall impact of this will be minimal," Paul Walsh, vice president at The Weather Company, said in an interview with "Closing Bell."

"If you compare this to what we had last year, it really is not a significant game-changer."

In fact, he thinks the weather will help retailers.

"The fact that we had a very mild December means a lot of seasonal goods probably stayed on the shelves so they probably carried over a lot of inventory into January," Walsh said.

"This very cold weather we had in January, the fact that we're having a snowstorm in the middle of the week that will have a minimal impact on traffic, it will actually help from a retail perspective and it will help them get into Q1, February a little bit cleaner."

-The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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