By Huw Jones
LONDON (Reuters) – Goldman Sachs said on Tuesday it will launch a share trading hub in Paris, in the sector’s latest move to avoid disruption to customers after Britain’s full departure from the European Union next month.
London has long been Europe’s share trading centre, but the EU has yet to say if it will allow full cross-border share trading to continue after December 31, when Britain’s unfettered access to the bloc ends.
Goldman said it plans to launch a SIGMA X Europe platform in Paris prior to January 4, 2021, subject to regulatory approvals.
“We want to ensure that our clients continue to have access to all of our key liquidity sources post-Brexit,” said Liz Martin, Goldman’s global co-head of futures and equities electronic trading.
SIGMA X Europe will trade shares listed across 15 European markets, while its existing UK hub will continue to trade UK and European listings.
Britain has said it will allow UK investors to continue using share trading platforms based in the bloc from January.
Brussels has said that EU investors should use a platform inside the bloc to trade shares denominated in euros, thereby splitting markets and forcing major players like Goldman to have a foot in both camps.
Three pan-European share trading platforms in London – CBOE, London Stock Exchange’s Turquoise, and Aquis Exchange – have already obtained regulatory approvals for EU hubs.
Turquoise has said that without the EU agreeing to full two-way market access by Nov. 30, it will start up its new Dutch hub.
Also on Tuesday, British real estate investment trust Segro listed its shares in Paris as UK companies look to move assets and operations over to mainland Europe as Brexit looms.
(Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)