19 listed firms face suspension for failure to meet PSE rule

Posted at 12/17/2012 7:29 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Around 19 listed corporations may face trading suspension on the first trading day of 2013 if they are unable to meet the 10 percent minimum public ownership (MPO) requirement.

This after the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) reiterated its directive to errant listed firms to boost their public ownership to the mandated level or face trading suspension and higher stock transaction tax.

Listed companies have until the end of the year to comply with the rule.

Among these companies include PAL Holdings (2.3 percent), Alphaland (8.03 percent), Synergy Grid (7.44 percent), LT Group (4.75 percent), SPC Power (4.53 percent), Vivant (4.18 percent), Atok-Big Wedge (4.16 percent), Seacem (2.4 percent), Allied Bank(1.51 percent), PNOC-EC (0.21 percent), Globalport (0.12 percent), San Miguel Properties (.06 percent), 2go (1.85 percent), fdc (3.34 percent), Maybank ATR KimEng Financial (0.89 percent), IMI (8.14 percent), Manchester (6.79 percent), San Miguel Brewery (0.61 percent), and Mariwasa (3.89 percent).

Three companies – Eton Properties Philippines, Metro Pacific Tollways and First Metro Investments Corp., meanwhile, have pending petitions for voluntary delisting with the PSE.

Next stage and Philcomsat, on the other hand, are under trading suspension. Nextstage has a public float of 1.2 percent while Philcomsat has a public ownership level of 9.61 percent.

Maybank, Synergy Grid, FDC and Alphaland earlier said they would comply with the MPO requirement by issuing shares via a private placement.

Failure to boost their public float will result in a trading freeze for a period of not more than six months or until June 30, 2013.

After the lapse of the six-month suspension period, they will automatically be delisted from the local bourse unless they have by then complied with the requirement.

Once trading is suspended, any transaction on stock trades will no longer enjoy the preferential tax rate of 0.5 percent.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue will instead slap a capital gains tax equivalent to five percent of net capital gains amounting to not over P100,000. A 10 percent gains tax will apply on the excess.

A documentary stamp tax of P0.75 on each P200 of the par value of the stock will also be applied on the sale.

Trading of shares listed at the PSE are subject only to stock transaction tax equivalent to 0.50 percent of the transaction value levied on the seller.

Aside from this, companies must still pay listing fees while they are suspended.

"The MPO requirement is one of the governance initiatives that we believe will help democratize the ownership of listed companies and increase trading activity. As the deadline for compliance with the rule is nearing, we urge investors to continue to update themselves of developments concerning listed companies that remain to be non-compliant up to this date," said PSE president Hans B. Sicat.