ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION OF MEMBERS OF THE ATHENS EXCHANGES

Written by Yiannis Passalides. Posted in ID/Profile

History and Goal, page 1

The "Association of Members of the Athens Exchange" is a non-profit organization, members of which can be brokerage firms and banks that are members of the Athens Exchange, including the cash and the derivatives markets.

The "Association of Members of the Athens Exchanges" was established in 1988, with founding members all stockbrokers of that time.

 The Association's objectives are to:

  • Protect and promote its members' activities as well as safeguard their professional interests.
  • Study issues of common interest to its members.
  • Promote the idea of investing on the stock exchange and its importance in a free, developing society.

The Association aims at  and works towards acting as an adviser to the authorities and the other statutory bodies of the Greek capital market and  transfer to the supervisory bodies of the Capital Market (Ministry of  Economy and Capital Market Commission), the views and concerns of people working in the stock market and applying the laws and decisions of these bodies in their everyday routine and therefore have direct knowledge of the effects and the problems these laws and decisions create.

In recent years, SMEXA's contribution has been significant in shaping the institutional framework of the capital market.

In addition, SMEXA follows European developments and participates effectively in what is happening in Europe, with statements and representations to the institutions of the European Union.

 SMEXA has also taken the lead in an effort to substantially approach similar Associations in the other Member States of the European Union, in order  to exchange views on issues that are of common concern to members of stock exchanges at a European level  and promote a common response to these, where this is feasible.

History and Goal, page 2

The Law 1806/88, which led to substantial changes in stock market legislation, gave the opportunity of establishing brokerage firms, which started to appear in 1990. In 1996, the EC Directives 93/22 (Investment Services Directive) and 93/6 (Capital Adequacy Directive) were fully implemented into Greek Law.

On November 1st, 2007, MiFID was fully implemented into Greek Law and all brokerage firms are considered as investment firms.

Presently, members of the "Association of Members of the Athens Exchanges" are 50 investment firms and banks, all of which are authorised to operate on the ATHEX.

The actual share capital of an ATHEX member, amounts to € 10 million in average.

The Association's members' net shareholders' equity amounts to well over € 350 million and the total number of qualified personnel that are employed is well over 2000 people.

 The members of the Association act as intermediaries in securities trading, by providing the investment service of reception and transmission of orders as well as execution of orders, while they engage in business activities such as investment advice, portfolio management, custodian services, underwriting, investment analysis, providing advisory services in cases of listing on the ATHEX , etc.

The fees for all services provided are negotiable. It should be mentioned, though, that the quality of analyses and the services provided by the ATHEX members is internationally recognised.

History and Goal, page 3

 As regards trading activities, the members of the ATHEX have to comply with the Rules of Conduct that were drafted and accepted by the members themselves as well as the provisions of MiFID. They also have to comply with the provisions of the law on Market Abuse, which was adopted in May 2005 by the Greek Parliament in accordance with the Market Abuse Directive,

In order transactions to be protected and brokerage firms' liabilities to be covered, the "Athens Stock Exchange Members' Guarantee Fund " was set up in 1954 and was restructured in the end of 1997, the participation in which is compulsory for all members of the ATHEX as well as all investment firms-non members of the ATHEX. Nowadays, the Fund's property, which is invested in real estate and fixed income securities, is considerable in relation to other European Stock Exchanges. Each member's contribution is weighed annually with the average daily value of transactions.

On  October 30, 2006, ATHEX and Cyprus Stock Exchange launched a common Platform, supporting the markets of the two exchanges. CSE Members, which have been previously accepted as Remote Members of the Athens Exchange (ATHEX), have the opportunity to trade in securities listed on the ATHEX, while at the same time, ATHEX Members which were approved as CSE Remote Members have the opportunity to trade in Cypriot shares.