Unfavorable disclosures made public by listed companies at the last minute before the beginning of a long public holiday will be republished in a regulatory filing after the end of the holiday to protect investors from any surprising losses.
Korea Exchange (KRX), the country’s sole securities exchange operator, announced on Friday that it will make disclosures that will be made just before the Chuseok holiday – after the market closes at 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 11 – available again in a regulatory filing on Sept. 16 via the electronic system (kind.krx.or.kr).
Last-minute disclosures of share-lifting information, such as a company’s decision to buy own shares or supply contract, however, will be excluded from the re-announcement list that will apply for all bourses – the main Korea Composite Stock Price Index (Kospi), secondary Korea Securities Dealers Automated Quotations (Kosdaq), and Korea New Exchange (Konex).
Chuseok holiday, one of the biggest and longest holidays in Korea, falls between Sept. 12 to 15 this year. The KRX plans to expand the application of the new regulatory rule to other holidays that last for longer than three days.
The new policy comes out of concern that unfavorable information disclosed at the last minute before a holiday has often failed to reach investors, making them vulnerable to unwanted, surprising losses in stocks when the market reopens after a long holiday.
The KRX advised listed companies that inevitably need to disclose news on Sept. 11 to do so before the market closes at 3:30 p.m. in Seoul time.
The operator also plans to officially announce a list of companies that habitually make public information of unfavorable news at the last minute for a year. The first list will be unveiled right after the Labor Day in early May next year. The KRX will look into companies’ disclosures made on the Children’s Day holiday period in May this year and those to be made around Chuseok and Lunar New Year holiday next year. Companies will be on the list if they make two or more last-minute disclosures every year.
KRX’s move comes amid concerns that some companies take advantage of the long holiday period and announce negative news when investors are away and have relatively little interest. Such disclosures could raise issues related to delivering information in a timely manner to investors and fairness among investors.
When the KRX looked into cases during a long holiday period in early May, seven companies in the Kospi market and 38 in the junior Kosdaq market made announcements after the markets closed just before the beginning of Children’s Day holiday on May 3.
By Chung Seung-hwan and Lee Eun-joo
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]