The Strategist

US authorities to check IPOs of Slack and other unicorns at NYSE

12/23/2019 - 09:36

The US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating Slack’s listing, writes The Wall Street Journal. The regulator was also interested in information about initial public offerings of other companies.

Ajay Suresh
Ajay Suresh
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is studying the listing of Slack, owner of the eponymous corporate messenger, as well as placements of other large companies on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). Sources familiar with the situation told The Wall Street Journal that the regulator wants to know how the trade went on the first day.

Recently, SEC commissioners sent several letters, one of which requested information from the market maker Citadel Securities, who summarized applications for the purchase and sale of Slack shares on the company’s debut day on the exchange, WSJ interlocutors noted. The letters’ authors were interested in information about the start of trading on June 20 in the conditions of the so-called direct listing. This procedure is carried out by a company that wants to become public, but it does not need to raise capital by issuing shares on the stock exchange. Sources of the newspaper added that the commission is also looking for information about other placements on the exchange.

According to some sources, the regulator requested Citadel Securities emails sent immediately before the start of trading, as well as information on how the company’s rules comply with NYSE requirements. Another trading company GTS received a similar request, the publication’s interlocutors said.

In the past few years, the commission has been investigating IPOs conducted by unicorn companies, writes WSJ. The newspaper clarifies that it does not have information about who the investigation is being conducted against, and which exactly operations seemed suspicious to the regulator. It is possible that the audit will end without charge, the publication emphasizes.

NYSE wants listing to be transparent and fair to market participants, the exchange’s spokesman said.