US electronic broker-dealer Liquidnet is extending its electronic marketplace for block trading to cover Canadian equities.
Liquidnet says it has been approved by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) to trade Canadian equities and its institutional member firms worldwide will be able to start trading in the fourth quarter of 2006.
Robert Young, managing director of Liquidnet Canada, says: "Canada is the seventh-largest equities market in the world, and thirty percent of our nearly 350 global Members have Canadian equity assets under management. Having Canadian equities on the Liquidnet system is an important step towards Liquidnet becoming a true global marketplace."
Liquidnet launched its Canadian operations in Ontario on 27 July 2004, where its Liquidnet Canada subsidiary is an approved investment dealer and ATS.
In addition to the US, Liquidnet members also trade today in 14 European equity markets.
Seth Merrin, Liquidnet's CEO, says the equity markets have seen unparalleled moves toward globalisation recently, and Liquidnet's goal is to provide the largest natural pool of global liquidity in the industry.
"Through Liquidnet, a buy-side firm in France, for example, will be able to trade a million shares of an Italian stock with a Member in Canada. That is a global institutional marketplace," adds Merrin.