Nasdaq OMX says it will establish a new US listing market, called BX, for companies that do not qualify for an exchange listing, and launch a third equity trading venue offering a price/size execution priority model.
The platform, which still needs SEC approval, will target companies currently trading on over the counter venues or are facing delisting from other exchanges and "aspire to list on, or return to, the Nasdaq Stock Market".
The firm says BX will have basic quantitative listing standards but will require companies to comply with many of the qualitative requirements for listing on Nasdaq and other securities exchanges. It also stresses that transactions will be subject to a "high level of real-time and post-trade market surveillance".
The financial crisis has seen many listed companies fall below standards set by exchanges such as Nasdaq OMX and Nyse Euronext, hitting the platforms' revenues.
Bob McCooey, SVP, Nasdaq OMX, says: "With BX we are filling a necessary need for a well-regulated listing venue for companies that otherwise would transfer to, or remain on an unregulated or lightly regulated platform. This platform will provide significant benefits and protections to companies and their shareholders alike."
The exchange is using its listing license from the acquisition of The Boston Stock Exchange in September 2008 to launch the new market.
Nasdaq OMX has also announced plans to launch a third equity trading platform during the second half of 2010, pending SEC approval. The new exchange will execute orders on a price/size priority model, as opposed to the prevailing price/time model employed on the exchange's two other execution venues.
The new market - which will use the license acquired from Nasdaq OMX's 2007 acquisition of the former Philadelphia Stock Exchange - will run on the Inet technology platform.