New measures proposed to strengthen Singapore stock market

A slew of changes is being proposed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Singapore Exchange to strengthen the local stock market, which include having a minimum trading price for mainboard-listed shares of 10 to 20 cents and a requirem
A slew of changes is being proposed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Singapore Exchange to strengthen the local stock market, which include having a minimum trading price for mainboard-listed shares of 10 to 20 cents and a requirement of 5 per cent collateral to buy shares. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

A slew of changes is being proposed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Singapore Exchange (SGX) to strengthen the local stock market, in the wake of last October's penny stock crash.

The potential measures, unveiled on Friday, include having a minimum trading price for mainboard-listed shares of 10 to 20 cents.

The regulators are also proposing a requirement of 5 per cent collateral to buy shares, which could spell an end to unsecured contra trading here.

Another suggestion is to have investors' short-selling positions disclosed.

A public consultation paper has been issued, and interested parties have until May 2 to give feedback.

Mr Lee Chuan Teck, MAS assistant managing director of capital markets, said: "This consultation allows us to have a conversation with all stakeholders on how to make the market stronger and more mature."

SGX chief executive Magnus Bocker said: "It encompasses structural and regulatory aspects crucial to a well-functioning securities market."

Separately, SGX also announced that it is revising its fee structure for stocks from May 2.

For instance, clearing fees will be lowered from 0.04 per cent to 0.0325 per cent of contract value. The $600 cap for contracts worth $1.5 million or more will be removed.

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