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VANCOUVER STOCK EXCHANGE COMPUTERIZED TRADING SALES ADD EXPOSURE

 VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Jan. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Sales of the Vancouver Computerized Trading (VCT) system in 1992 brought additional international exposure for the Vancouver Stock Exchange. Three world markets, including those in Istanbul, Turkey, Maracaibo, Venezuela and London-based Tradepoint Financial, purchased the system to serve as the basis of their own automated trading systems.
 Meanwhile, exchanges in Mexico City and Caracas, Venezuela, made adaptations and worked towards implementing their own versions of VCT, which they purchased in July 1991 and April 1991, respectively. Caracas went on-line with automated trading Nov. 30, 1992. Mexico City's system is expected to go "live" by March. The specifications as laid out by the Mexican exchange are complete and will become operational once regulatory approval has been given.
 The Exchange's continuing efforts to market the system to other marketplaces were boosted in June when a study commissioned by Germany's stock exchanges rated VCT first in comparison to several international systems, including those in Australia and Sweden. At year-end, there were 161 active VCT terminals in Canada, including 15 in Toronto, two in Montreal and two in Calgary. The remainder are located in Vancouver.
 Compliance Activity Continued
 Over the past year, the Vancouver Stock Exchange continued its aggressive regulation of the marketplace. As a self-regulatory organization, the Exchange intervened in share trading by halting, suspending or delisting 69 issues in 1992 pending clarification of corporate or trading information. The VSE also requested the resignation of some 59 directors considered by the Exchange to be unsuitable for company duties.
 Reverse Takeovers Increased
 The trend towards listing on the Vancouver Stock Exchange by way of a reverse takeover (RTO), whereby an established non-listed company takes over a company already listed on the VSE, increased substantially in 1992. Thirty-four companies went public by way of an RTO in 1992 as compared to 20 in 1991. Of all RTOs in 1992, 91 percent were involved in non-resource-related activities such as high technology, real estate, and financing services, as compared to 80 percent in 1991.
 New MarketDepth(TM) Services Introduced
 Following its introduction in Fall 1992, MarketDepth(TM) by Order, an on-line information service available to VSE members, was well received by member brokers. More than 150 terminals were on the system which is distributed via quote vendors Star Data and Telerate. MarketDepth by Order complements another VSE service, MarketDepth(TM) by Price, by adding an extra measure of critical market information, including detailing individual orders and identifying bidding and offering member firms.
 International Associate Membership Status Defined
 A new form of VSE membership was defined last year to increase participation from international brokers. International Associate status entitles "off-shore" participants to similar market information as VSE members. However trading must take place through a full member with whom the associate has an agreement. As well, International Associate status will be limited to members or jurisdictions which have similar securities regulations to those in Canada.
 In other member news, three brokerages firms became members of the VSE in 1992: Connor, Clark & Co. Ltd., Marathon Brokerage and Great Pacific Management Co. Ltd.
 Pilot Arbitration Project Established
 In 1992, the VSE in cooperation with the Investment Dealers Association of Canada (IDA) laid the groundwork for establishing a pilot arbitration project in B.C. to resolve disputes between clients and member brokerage firms. Set for implementation in early 1993, the one-year pilot program will provide an alternative to litigation for disputes involving claims of up to $25,000. The B.C. International Commercial Arbitration Centre, recognized for cost- effective dispute resolution, will provide facilities and administrative support throughout the duration of the program.
 Annual Statistical Summary
 Market activity for 1992 surpassed 1991 figures, exceeding average trading levels maintained over the past four years. This year's gain was primarily due to strong trading in the Commercial/Industrial (senior board non-resource) section early in the year and the resource section (senior board) during the fourth quarter.
 Total VSE Volume for 1992, at 3.9 billion shares, was up 6 percent over the previous year while value, at $3.6 billion, edged up by 3 percent.
 The Exchange's Senior Board maintained its 16 percent share of total volume during 1992, but its share of total value dropped from 51 percent last year to 41 percent this year. The decline in value was due in part to a drop in large trades of high priced interlisted issues and a corresponding increase in trading of comparatively lower priced VSE Resource issues. The Resource section made strong gains with volume and value climbing by 14 percent and 25 percent respectively over last year.
 The Composite Index gained 17 percent during the year as a 50 percent rise by the Resource Index compensated for an 18 percent decline in the Commercial/Industrial Index. The Commercial/Industrial Index started the year strongly, then tapered off in the third and fourth quarters.
 While trading on the VSE was up over last year, its share of volume and value of shares traded on all Canadian exchanges slipped fractionally to 28 percent and 4 percent, respectively.
 Financings were up by 16 percent over 1991 to $395 million as both resource and non-resource-based companies raised additional money. Financings by resource companies accounted for 53 percent of all money raised through VSE facilities, a slight gain over last year.
 Quarterly Summary
 The volume for the fourth quarter was 1.1 billion shares, up 29 percent over the previous quarter and up 15 percent over the same quarter last year. The year's fourth quarter value, at $839 million, was up 18 percent over the third quarter, but down 8 percent from the corresponding quarter of 1991.
 December Summary
 Robust trading activity continued in December as speculation surrounding diamond mining in the Northwest Territories pushed Resource stock prices higher on heavy trading.
 Volume for December eased fractionally from November to 387 million shares, while the value of shares traded rose by 9 percent over November to $315 million.
 The senior board increased its share of total VSE value to 42 percent from 39 percent in November, because of a doubling in the value of large transactions. Meanwhile, the senior board's share of total volume slipped to 17 percent.
 Financings for December nearly doubled last month's total to $46 million as all types of financings were up over the previous month. The largest improvement was a two fold increase in the value of private placements, which accounted for 80 percent of all money raised on the VSE during December.
 The Resource Index reached a new high for the year of 690.36 on Dec. 8 before retreating to 684.29 at month-end. This, along with moderate gains in the Commercial/Industrial and Venture Indices pushed the VSE Composite Index up by 10 percent during the month. By month-end December the market capitalization of the 1,307 stocks included in the Composite Index was $4.1 billion.
 Of the 1,880 issues listed on the Exchange during the month of December, 140 posted new highs and 152 posted new lows. The most active stocks by volume included: Commonwealth Gold (Resource), Golden Dividend Resources (Venture), Layfield Resources (Venture), Ossa Resources (Venture) and Bellex Mining (Venture).
 The VSE's share of trading volume on all Canadian exchanges dropped slightly from the previous month to 26 percent, while its share of the total value was up fractionally to 4 percent.
 Listings
 Two new companies listed on the VSE in December, compared to three last month and five in December of 1991. While one company is classified as a Venture company, the other is part of the Commercial/Industrial section of the senior board. Bermuda-based Eldorado Corp. (Venture) is involved in the exploration and development of mineral properties with interests in Mexico. Riverside Forest Products Ltd. (senior board) is in the forest products industry with assets in British Columbia.
 Two reverse takeovers were completed during the month, the same number as last month and compared to none in December of 1991. An "RTO" occurs when a non-listed company takes over one already listed on the Exchange.
 Softquad International Inc., an Ontario-based company involved in developing and marketing computer software, completed its RTO on Dec. 7.
 Clarion Environmental Technologies Inc. resumed trading Dec. 23. The Vancouver-based company is involved in a hot/dry technology designed to clean industrial exhaust streams.
 Similar to last month, no companies were upgraded to the senior board in December. During the same period last year, however, six companies were upgraded. The total number of senior board companies at year end totaled 324.
 Seven companies were delisted from the VSE this month, compared to 21 last month and six in December 1991.
 -0- 1/7/93
 /CONTACT: David A. Laundy of Vancouver Stock Exchange, 604-689-3334/


CO: Vancouver Stock Exchange ST: British Columbia IN: SU:

MS-JB -- LA028 -- 2766 01/07/93 15:50 EST
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