A new discussion paper (DP 17/2) on how UK primary capital markets can most effectively meet the needs of issuers and investors has been published by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
The FCA is seeking feedback on whether the present boundary between the standard and premium listing categories is appropriate, particularly in relation to overseas issuers and exchange traded funds, and the effectiveness of UK primary equity markets in providing capital for growth, particularly for early-stage science and technology companies.
It also wants views on whether there is a role for a UK primary debt multilateral trading facility and its potential structure; and measures that could be introduced to support greater retail participation in debt markets.
The FCA has also launched a consultation on proposed technical enhancements to the Listing Rules. This considers improvements to FCA rules and guidance to ensure the Listing Rules continue to service the needs of issuers and investors.
The proposed changes include: clarifying the eligibility requirements for premium listing; introducing a concessionary route to premium listing for property companies; updating how premium-listed issuers may classify transactions and new requirements on when they should consult with the FCA; and a new approach to the suspension of listing for reverse takeovers.
The two papers are part of the FCA’s wider work on the efficiency and effectiveness of UK primary markets as set out in the 2016/17 business plan. Comments on both papers are due by 14 May 2017.