China lowered the assets requirement for individuals investing in stocks listed on the New Third Board as part of a much-anticipated reform of the over-the-counter market.
Investors with at least 1 million yuan ($142,900) of securities assets and more than two years of trading or working experience in securities, funds and futures can now open trading accounts at the National Equities Exchange and Quotations (NEEQ), known as the New Third Board, according to a rule released Friday. The minimum asset requirement is significantly lower than the earlier threshold of 5 million yuan.
Launched in 2013, the NEEQ market supplements the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges and offers startup companies a financing channel with low costs and simple listing requirements, but the board has been struggling in recent years.
Investors have long complained that the New Third Board lacks liquidity, making it less appealing to startups.
The China Securities Regulatory Commission in October announced plans to reform the New Third Board to allow companies to raise money more easily and broaden its investor base.
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