NYSE Teaming With TSE – BURSA Try To Follow?

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Jan 26 2007
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Stock Exchanges all over the globe should fasten their seat belts and start strategizing on their directions to face the new challenge of globalization. Latest being New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) CEO John Thain who spoke from Davos, Switzerland, on the plan to link with Tokyo Stock Exchange. He didn’t provide much information on the teaming of NYSE-TSE at this moment but told Reuters that more details will be announced next week.
“Over time it makes sense to have linkages with the Tokyo Stock Exchange…We are working at it,” Thain told reporters on the fringes of the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos. He also said that full integration of NYSE and Euronext would take a year, and that the combined exchange was open to include other European bourses.
On the other hand, Bursa Malaysia (KLSE: BURSA, stock-code 1818) stock price jumped to above RM10.00 earlier this week when the speculation on Bursa taking up minority stakes in regional stock exchanges was on the air. Bursa chief executive officer, Yusli Mohamed Yusoff later confirmed the rumor but admitted the difficulty in doing so. Well, at least he understands that stock exchanges are regarded as national infrastructure and without strong justification, you can’t simply propose and hope the other parties will hand-over the stake to you. That’s the mentality within Asia region at this moment, with the exception of Japan?
It’s the same way the government of Malaysia over-protect its’ own pets in terms of GLC (government-link-companies) such as Malaysian Airline System Berhad (KLSE: MAS, stock-code 3786) and Proton Holdings Berhad (KLSE: PROTON, stock-code 5304), Telekom Malaysia Berhad (KLSE: TM, stock-code 4863) and Tenaga Nasional Berhad (KLSE: TENAGA, stock-code 5347). Of course now that Proton is in deep trouble the government starts to open up the door for foreign acquisition. Khazanah Nasional Bhd is also reviewing the prescribed limit on foreign shareholding in GLCs in view of rising interest in Malaysian equities by foreign investors, echoed by TENAGA president and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh during TENAGA’s earning announcement.
While the western countries (and certain Asia country such as Japan) have recognized the benefits of open market, most of ASEAN countries are still struggling trying to learn the basic-101 of open-market. It’s time to give these countries a wake-up call before they’re left in their own dinosaur-age thinking. I’ll not be surprise if Singapore be the next (the best candidate) to liberalize its’ equity market.

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