The Bermuda Stock Exchange - an alternative in the era of the EU's MAR

In July 2016, the EU’s Market Abuse Regulations (MAR) came into effect, imposing new obligations on issuers of securities listed on regulated markets and/or using trading facilities in the EU.

The aim of MAR is to reduce undesirable market activity such as insider dealing and other market abuses and also to further harmonize market regulations among EU member states.

Whilst the objective of MAR is to combat market abuse, its application ‘across the board’ to all types of securities creates inordinately onerous conditions for issuers of debt securities (such as high yield bonds). Accordingly, issuers of debt securities who would normally establish and maintain their listings in EU states have been looking for other suitable options.

The Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX), with its fully electronic trading platform and worldwide recognition, is uniquely positioned to provide an alternative for issuers seeking the same level of market protection for its


investors, while avoiding the extra burden and costs associated with MAR. The BSX achieves this through its competitive pricing and robust, yet practical regulations.

The BSX enjoys a wide range of recognition from tax authorities in many jurisdictions including the UK, Ireland, Canada and Australia. Additionally, the BSX enjoys memberships and designations among the world’s elite securities organizations such as the U.S Securities Exchange Commission and the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE).

On 15 November, 2016 the BSX became a board member of the WFE, with BSX CEO Greg Wojciechowski joining the board with 16 other chairmen and CEO’s from exchanges around the world, including: Nasdaq; Deutsche Börse; and Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing.

Estera Securities (Bermuda) Limited (ESBL) is a leading listing sponsor and trading member of the BSX. The total market capitalization of securities currently listed on the BSX that were sponsored by ESBL exceeds US $175 billion (as of 8 December 2016). ESBL is a leading listing sponsor of: insurance linked securities; “plain-vanilla” corporate debt; and sovereign debt on the BSX. ESBL has also led the way by successfully listing the more specialized variety of debt instruments such as preferred equity certificates.

For more information about listing on the BSX, please contact our Bermuda Team.


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