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Netherlands-based brokerage to start business in S. Korea

Financial Services Commision (Yonhap)
Financial Services Commision (Yonhap)


South Korea‘s top financial regulator said Wednesday it has granted preliminary approval for Netherlands-based brokerage house IMC to operate its financial investment and brokerage business in the country. 

The move came after the Dutch firm had requested the Financial Services Commission’s approval in June last year. The brokerage obtained the authority‘s final nod on the condition that its Seoul-based subsidiary serves as a market maker -- a member of an exchange committed to quoting prices at which it will buy and sell securities, providing liquidity to markets as well as profit from the difference in bid and ask prices, according to the FSC.

“The entry of new foreign securities firms appears to have a positive impact on South Korea‘s financial hub vision. (The FSC) will closely monitor whether the market makers, including the newly launched IMC Securities Korea, carry out their key roles properly,” the FSC said in a statement. 

Tentatively named IMC Securities Korea, the company is slated to start business within six months, marking the first entry of a foreign brokerage firm in nearly four years, since China Merchants Securities and Mizuho Securities received business licenses in July 2017.

As a market maker, IMC Securities Korea is expected to focus on providing purchase and sale solutions for local investors.

Founded in 1989, IMC is one of the world’s most active proprietary trading firms, having functioned as a key market maker in various products listed on more than 100 exchanges throughout the world. Specializing in high-frequency trading strategies, the company has extended its business to short selling and statistical arbitrage services. 

By Choi Jae-hee (cjh@heraldcorp.com)

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