UK revokes Moscow bourse's status as recognised exchange

The letters MOEX are pictured at the Moscow Exchange, with the Kremlin and the Four Seasons Hotel seen in the background, in Moscow, Russia, May 26, 2017. REUTERS/Segrei Karpukhin/Files

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain on Thursday revoked the Moscow Stock Exchange’s (MOEX) status as a recognised stock exchange, removing some tax relief for new investors.

Britain grants recognised status to some exchanges, which allow the securities traded on them to benefit from specific tax reliefs. While existing investments through MOEX are unaffected, new ones will no longer be able to benefit.

When Britain proposed the move last month it said it was in response to restrictions the Bank of Russia had placed on foreign investors, citing a Feb. 28 ban which prevented brokers from selling assets at the instruction of non-Russian residents.

“With the Moscow stock exchange failing to withdraw their restrictions on foreign investors, the UK had no choice but to remove its recognised status,” said Lucy Frazer, Financial Secretary to the Treasury.

“This will stop further money being channelled into Russian assets and send a clear message that there is no case for new investment in Russia.”

The government said in April the exchange was “no longer operating in line with the normal commercial standards expected of a recognised exchange.”

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; editing by William James