Hong Kong has no delisting manners – though sell investors seem to like it that way

Hong Kong is a world’s biggest marketplace for initial open offerings, though it competence arrange bottom in terms of a series of companies that have been delisted.

Unlike New York, London and Tokyo, and even a mainland, a internal bourse does not have a resource in place to forcibly ban feeble behaving listed companies.

Delistings can be for any series of reasons, though mostly they engage a disaster to accommodate an exchange’s smallest mandate for price, capitalisation or liquidity. In impassioned cases, they are related to rascal or disaster to record reports a sell or regulators require.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange has already remarkable a miss of a delisting resource as a pivotal risk cause to be deliberate by mainland investors seeking to deposit in Hong Kong.

Even many penny bonds or companies pang critical waste have never been diminished from Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing.

Benny Mau, authority of Hong Kong Securities Association, says a miss of a delisting resource has led some companies to let their performances slip, both financially and in progressing their share prices.

“Hong Kong requires a [listing] carefree to uncover during slightest a HK$50 million distinction in a 3 years heading adult to a listing. However, there are no distinction or share cost mandate after a association has listed that means all companies can effectively start to remove income and not worry about being diminished from a batch market.

“As prolonged as we compensate your inventory cost on time and a business stays in operation, afterwards we do not need to worry about delisting,” Mau said.

“This is because so many companies perform badly in a evident issue of a listing.”

The Shenzhen and Shanghai batch exchanges will both ban companies that post 3 years of waste in a row, with their shares demoted to a over-the-counter market, a supposed Third Board.

The Nasdaq in a United States delists any association trade subsequent US$1 for 30 days. In Taiwan, they can be private from a sell if a marketplace capitalisation falls subsequent NT$200 million (HK$49 million).

The Nasdaq releases a series of companies to be delisted on a website each Thursday. Currently, 27 firms will be private over a subsequent 10 days.

That is scarcely 3 times a 11 companies delisted from Hong Kong in a initial 9 months of this year, and those embody 4 firms changed from a Growth Enterprise Market to a categorical board, and dual around privatisations.

The miss of a forced delisting resource means companies that make waste for many years, trade during low prices, with small marketplace cap, can tarry on a Hong Kong marketplace indefinitely.

The usually reasons supposed penny bonds can be forced to delist, are if they tumble into financial trouble, when they can be dangling for dual years, or destroy to compare open boyant or other correspondence requirements.

But even then, if a white horseman can be found to buy shares in a association or inject new assets, afterwards they can resume trading.

In Jul 2002, Hong Kong attempted to deliver manners to delist companies trade subsequent 50 HK cents for a full month. The subsequent day, HK$10 billion value of value was lost, as investors rushed to dump penny stocks.

Embarrassingly, a batch sell scrapped a conference practice 4 days later. The failure left many casualties, not only a sell investors who mislaid money.

The then-secretary for financial services and a treasury, Frederick Ma Si-hang, publicly apologised, while HKEX arch executive Kwong Ki-chi mislaid his HK$7.95 million a year pursuit after resigning for “personal reasons”.

In Nov 2002, HKEX relaunched a delisting conference paper that private a 50 HK cent delisting threshold, though due other methods such as marketplace caps or profitability levels to establish if a organisation should be dropped.

The conference took 3 years. The final preference was that zero would be done, after infancy antithesis to a idea.

“Respondents suggested that low-priced bonds are a underline of each market, a outcome of marketplace army of supply and direct and do not bear any attribute to a integrity or good sequence of a market,” a HKEX paper pronounced then.

Mau pronounced nonetheless a delisting resource would assistance urge corporate governance, he believes a sell would not severely cruise reintroducing a offer after a penny batch fiasco.

There are several hundred penny bonds in Hong Kong, that are mostly renouned with sell investors. They would potentially gains billions of dollars, for instance, if they authorised companies to be used as “shells” to concede back-door listings.

But in a initial instance, they are seen as a brief cut towards a grave application.

Buyers, however, need to compensate a reward of

HK$400 million to HK$600 million to a company’s strange shareholders to buy a inventory status.

Ken Wong, Asia equity portfolio dilettante during Eastspring Investments, shares a perspective it would be formidable for HKEX to delist shares trade underneath 50 HK cents, as penny bonds have been a underline of a Hong Kong marketplace for decades.

“There is such a prolonged story of sell investors trade penny bonds in Hong Kong that we don’t see how that can be fast stopped,” Wong said.

However, Brett McGonegal, a arch executive of Capital Link International, pronounced all markets need clearly tangible delisting rules.

“The reasons for a delisting positively start with a need and enterprise to strengthen investors from shopping into uneasy companies,” McGonegal said.

“The sell has a wordless import of corporate and financial fortitude and it’s a exchange’s pursuit to ceaselessly military these issues,” he said.

“On another level, illiquid uneasy companies infrequently have trade characteristics that lend themselves to strategy by operators that needs to be controlled.

”A smallest batch cost is not a right governance resource as there are copiousness of ways around it around retreat splits. The controls should concentration on marketplace cap, revenue, distinction tests and there should be a warning and beauty duration for a companies, to recover compliance,” McGonegal said.

Gordon Tsui Luen-on, a handling executive of Hantec Group International Finance, pronounced a HKEX could deliver a delisting resource if and when it launches a possess designed third house for start-ups.

“The HKEX competence confirm to deliver a third house and this would be a right timing to deliver a delisting mechanism, on a commander basis,” Tsui said.

Elvin Yu, a principal during grant consultancy organisation Goji Consulting, pronounced that grant account managers deposit for a prolonged term, in companies with fast dividends.

“It is, therefore, really doubtful they would deposit in any listed association that creates uninterrupted years of financial losses,” he said.

“Poor behaving companies could be incited around with a change in government or other factors, so a pivotal is how most toleration there should be, before a warning is triggered, and delisting imposed.”

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