The exchanges of the Brics emerging markets bloc have announced plans to form an alliance to expose foreign investors to their dynamic economies and to increase the liquidity of their trading venues.
This initiative was announced at the 51st AGM of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) in Johannesburg.
The initiative brings together BM&FBOVESPA from Brazil, MICEX from Russia (currently merging with RTS Stock Exchange), Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEx, China) and Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) from South Africa. The National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) and the BSE Ltd (India) have signed letters of support and will join the alliance after finalizing outstanding requirements.
At the first stage of this project the exchanges will begin cross-listing of financial derivatives on their benchmark equity indices. It is planned to launch cross-listed products by June 2012.
"Global investors are increasingly seeking exposure to leading developing markets," says Ronald Arculli, chairman of HKEx and of the WFE. "Thanks to this alliance, investors will gain easier access to major equity index derivatives of the BRICS markets which will now be offered in local currency on the alliance exchanges".
This is an important milestone in the history of developing countries, continues Mr Arculli. "The alliance enables more investors to gain exposure to the emerging economies of the BRICS group whose economic power is on the rise. From a global perspective this alliance highlights the growing significance of the BRICS economies and financial markets for the coming decade, and further underlines the importance of enhancing cooperation between the BRICS members".
At the second stage of the project members of the alliance plan to jointly develop new products for cross-listing on their exchanges. "In addition to measuring market performance, equity indices may be used as underlying assets to create new products, which can be the next step in the alliance development", says Russell Loubser, CEO of the JSE.
"The products designed at the second stage would then be cross listed and traded in local currencies," says Edemir Pinto, CEO of BM&F BOVESPA. "They will also ensure easy access for investors to other emerging markets through locally listed products."
The third stage may include further cooperation in joint products design and new services development.
"Apart from cross-listing products, there are other opportunities for growth and development within this alliance. For example, creation of joint products combining various underliers which will facilitate liquidity growth in the BRICS markets and improve the understanding of other developing markets by local investors," says Ruben Aganbegyan, President of MICEX.
All the partnering exchanges estimate the potential for cooperation created by this alliance very positively.
"The BRICS exchanges alliance has a great potential as it will create avenues for Indian investors to diversify their portfolios and expand into other emerging markets. It will also provide unique opportunities to investors in other BRICS nations to participate and contribute in India's growth. BSE will actively work towards bringing world-class products to India as well as developing new products for other BRICS markets." says Madhu Kannan, CEO of BSE Ltd.
Interest towards the BRICS markets is supported by the above-average growth forecast for these regions, as well as the rising consumer power generated by growing middle classes in each of the participating economies" says Ravi Narain, MD of the National Stock Exchange of India.
According to the WFE these six exchanges represent a combined market capitalization of USD 9.02 trillion, the number of their ussuer companies totals 9.5 thousand.
As per the research by the Futures Industry Association these six exchanges accounted for 18% of the global turnover in financial derivatives in H1 of 2011.