Saudi Arabia raises commissions on stock exchange trades

RIYADH, June 30 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia’s market regulator raised the commission on trades on the kingdom’s Tadawul stock exchange, which is seeking to attract foreign investors and sell state assets.

As well as raising the commission from 12 basis points to 15.5 basis points per transaction, Saudi’s Capital Market Authority (CMA) said on Thursday it had eliminated the fixed commission on equity transactions equal to or less than 10,000 riyals ($2,668).

Trading commissions are shared between the CMA, the Tadawul and brokers, with the majority going to brokers. Small traders will pay only the new percentage, with effect from July 17.

The CMA said it had taken into consideration “the anticipated approval of fees for the deposit, transfer, settlement, clearing and registration of ownership of securities traded on the Exchange.”

As well as undertaking reforms aimed at increasing foreign investment, the Tadawul is preparing to list itself in an initial public offering (IPO) in 2018. ($1 = 3.7482 riyals) (Reporting by Katie Paul; Editing by Alexander Smith)