New York Stock Exchange Changes Mind Again, Will Delist Chinese Telecom Giants

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The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) announced Wednesday that it would delist three Chinese telecom companies, backtracking on its Monday plan to cancel the delisting.

“The staff of NYSE Regulation has determined to commence proceedings to delist the securities of the following issuers. NYSE Regulation reached its decision that the Issuers are no longer suitable for listing pursuant to Listed Company Manual Section 802.01D in light of Executive Order 13959, which was signed on November 12, 2020,” the Exchange stated in a press release.

The cited executive order forbids from 9:30 a.m. (ET), Jan. 11 onwards, any person in the U.S. from engaging in transactions of “publicly traded securities, or any securities that are derivative of, or are designed to provide investment exposure to such securities, of any Communist Chinese military company.”

The NYSE had initially announced Thursday that it would delist three major Chinese telecommunications operators — China Telecom Corporation Limited (CHA), China Mobile Limited (CHL) and China Unicom Hong Kong Limited (CHU) — in compliance with the order. 

The Exchange then said Monday it was reversing the delisting after consultations with regulators in connection with the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control. (RELATED: New York Stock Exchange Reverses Plan To Delist Major Chinese Telecom Firms)

The now-mulled cancellation of the delisting was criticized by Sen. Marco Rubio, who, in a tweet, said Tuesday, “The days of Wall Street & China benefitting at the expense of American workers & industry has to end.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had reportedly phoned Tuesday the Exchange’s President Stacey Cunningham to express his disagreement with the reversal, according to Bloomberg.

“Subject to confirmation that [Depository Trust & Clearing Corp.] will settle trades executed on trade date January 7 and January 8, 2021, the NYSE will suspend trading in [the three firms] at 4:00 a.m. on January 11. Absent such confirmation, the NYSE will suspend trading at 4:00 a.m. on January 7, 2021,” the Exchange announced in its statement on the third about-turn in the delistings, adding that the three firms have the right to request a review of the delisting decision.

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