A complete legal guide to listing on the Australian Securities Exchange
This excerpt from the chapter ‘Australia: Australian Securities Exchange’ by Robyn Ferguson and Ryan White is from the title World Stock Exchanges: A Practical Guide, Second Edition, published by Globe Law and Business.
The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) is Australia’s primary stock exchange, hosting over 2,2001 listed entities across a range of industry sectors and geographical locations. A number of smaller securities exchanges operate in Australia, but over 80% of the publicly traded securities in Australia are traded via the ASX. The ASX has a total market capitalisation of around A$1.9 trillion, making it one of the world’s top 10 listed exchange groups by market capitalisation.2
Financial markets in Australia are governed by the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (the 2001 Act).3 The 2001 Act regulates the requirements for operating a financial market in Australia, and for listing on such a financial market. It requires the operator of a financial market in Australia either to hold an Australian market licence or to obtain a ministerial exemption from the requirement to hold one. Penalties apply where a person falsely holds out that he or she has an Australian market licence, that his or her operation of a financial market is authorised by an Australian market licence (or is exempt from the requirement to hold one) or that the person is a participant in a licensed market. The key obligations imposed on the ASX as the holder of an Australian market licence4 include:
ASIC has the power to vary, suspend or cancel market licences in prescribed circumstances. The 2001 Act also sets out provisions for the content, legal effect and enforcement of the listing rules of the ASX.6
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1. Market metrics are as at 31 December 2017.
2. Market metrics are as at 31 December 2017.