AFME Equity Primary Markets and Trading Report Q3 2021 | AFME

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Data Research
AFME Equity Primary Markets and Trading Report Q3 2021
06 Nov 2021
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Author Julio Suarez Director
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AFME is pleased to circulate its Equity Primary Markets and Trading Report for the third quarter of 2021 (Q3 2021).

The report provides an update on the performance of the equity market in Europe in activities such as primary issuance, Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A), equity liquidity structure, and market valuations.

In this quarter’s report we have included new data on the European equity market liquidity structure. The data shows that the majority of equity trading in Europe (82%) takes place on venues. A much smaller share takes place off-venue on alternative trading mechanisms known as systematic internalisers (SIs) which account for 10% of trading, and over the counter (OTC), which accounts for 8%, once technical trades are filtered out of the full universe of reported equity transactions.



Key findings


  • Equity underwriting on European exchanges accumulated an increase of 39% in the first three quarters of 2021 compared to the same period of 2020. However, following two exceptionally robust quarters, equity capital raising decelerated in 3Q 2021 to levels closer to historic volumes, with a decline of -46% QoQ.
  • IPOs have accumulated €52.8bn in the first three quarters of 2021, almost 5x the amount issued in the same period of 2020.
  • SPAC IPOs represented 11% of total European IPOs in Q3 2021, a decline from 15% in Q2 2021.
  • Completed M&A of European companies totalled €829bn in the first three quarters of 2021 a 60% increase from the amount completed in the same period of 2021 (€519bn). This represents the highest YtD volume since 2007.
  • The amount of announced M&A totalled €941bn in Q1-Q3 2021, an 81% increase from the same period of 2020.
  • De-SPAC acquisitions represented 8% of the total announced European M&A in Q3 2021 (5% in Q2 2021). 86% of the announced SPAC acquisitions of European companies during Q1-Q3 2021 are De-SPACs of US-headquartered SPACs. These European companies will be effectively listed on US exchanges via their SPAC parent company.
  • Average daily equity trading activity on European main markets and MTFs stood at €74.6bn in Q1-Q3 2021, 6% below the average daily observed in Q1-Q3 2020.
  • Double Volume Cap (DVC) update: The number of instruments suspended under the ESMA DVC has recently increased to 380 at the EU or trading venue level as of October 2021 (from 205 in Dec-20).
  • Domestic market capitalisation of European listed shares stood at €16.8tn at the end of September 2021, a 18% increase from €14.2 at the end of 2020.



Q1-Q3 2021 YtD variation of European Equity activity

EU member countries, UK and Switzerland