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Nasdaq Chief Executive Bob Greifeld, front right, and U.S. ambassador to China Clarke Randt, celebrate with other officials after ringing NASDAQ's opening bell by remote from the Grand Hyatt Beijing on April 3. - 

KAI RYSSDAL: It seems everybody wants a piece of China these days. And the U.S. stock market is no exception. Reuters is reporting Nasdaq is talking with regulators about setting up shop in Beijing. And Marketplace's Amy Scott reports, that may be just the beginning.

AMY SCOTT: China's stock market has been on such a tear, it's no wonder U.S. players want in on the game. More and more Chinese companies are going public. And U.S. stock exchanges want those companies to list their shares with them. Nasdaq, in particular, could use the business. Earlier this year the company failed in its bid to buy the London Stock Exchange. Bill Cline is a capital markets consultant with Acai Solutions. He says one reason Nasdaq wanted to buy the LSE was its presence in Asia. He says opening a China office is a Plan B.

BILL CLINE: One could look at this as somewhat of a play by Nasdaq to go directly into Asia, establish their own presence, and try and replicate the success that has primarily benefited the LSE over the past couple of years.

Nasdaq is under more pressure now that its chief competitor, the New York Stock Exchange, has merged with Europe's electronic exchange, Euronext. It's also formed partnerships in India and Japan. And the NYSE too plans to open an official office in China. Consultant Brad Bailey with Aite Group says that's partly to attract more listings. But also perhaps to pursue some kind of alliance with Chinese stock exchanges.

BRAD BAILEY: Large investors are really scouring the planet for opportunities. And the exchanges coming together and going cross-border adds to the efficiencies and ease in which investors can get access to other markets.

As they await final approval to set up shop in China, both the Nasdaq and the NYSE are pressing ahead there. They've each attracted half a dozen Chinese listings so far this year.

In New York, I'm Amy Scott for Marketplace.