Plus Markets posted a strong start to 2008 with 397,419 trades reported in January, an increase of 92% on December 2007.
The total value of trades was £2.8 billion, up 61%, and the number of shares traded was 1.7 billion, up 70%. Trading activity on PLUS has seen an exceptionally strong upward trend over the three months since the launch of its new trading platform in November 2007.
The average daily number of trades on PLUS in January rose to 18,065 trades (up from 10,901 in December), reaching a daily peak of 34,007 on 22 January. The pool of liquidity now available on PLUS contrasts credibly with other European markets - for example, the average daily number of trades on AIM during 2007 was 16,460*.
Also on 22 January, PLUS market share (53%) of all UK retail trading activity exceeded that of the London Stock Exchange (47%) for the first time. The total retail market share for the month of January was 39%.
PLUS continued to capture strong market share in some of the heaviest traded UK stocks during January, including Marks & Spencer (8.13% of total trades in the month), Standard Life (5.61%) and Royal Bank of Scotland (5.58%). In addition:
- On 10 January, the day following Marks & Spencer's 3rd quarter statement including Christmas trading, PLUS market share in M&S trades was 16.87%; and
- On 21 January, when statements were made by HM Treasury and Northern Rock in relation to a private sector solution for the bank, PLUS market share in Northern Rock trades was 49.42%.
There were 433 small & mid-cap securities in which 50% or more of their trades during January took place on PLUS and not the LSE. Of the 78 AIM securities dual-trading on PLUS, PLUS attracted circa 40% of total trading activity.
Additionally, the number of companies on the PLUS-quoted market has now risen to 218 worth £2.3 billion, continuing on its three-year growth trend, with more already in the pipeline.
"These are extremely encouraging numbers which demonstrate that under MiFID, transaction volume is flowing to PLUS Markets. Brokers recognise PLUS as a competitive trading venue acr across all equity segments and as liquidity continues to build, it is creating firm foundations for new listing and quotation possibilities," said Business Development Director Cyril Théret.