Standard Bank joins Tokyo Stock Exchange

8 March 2007

South African bank Standard Bank has become the ninth foreign institution to be accepted as a full member of the Tokyo Commodity Exchange (Tocom), said the exchange's head.

Standard Bank, which is the biggest bank in Africa by assets, will join US banking giants Lehman Brothers, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley in the ranks of Tocom's full members.

Full membership will entitle the bank to trade in energy and metals, such as gold and aluminium, via its own account on Japan's leading commodity exchange.

Standard Bank's move comes as more and more foreign banks are looking to join TOCOM, which now has 40 foreign institutions, including Barclays Capital, as associate members.

Speaking at a news conference, Tocom chairman Masaaki Nangaku, said: "I cannot comment on specific names, but there are several others showing interest in joining our exchange.

"I welcome this kind of change in market structure as they can contribute to raise liquidity," he added.

In 2006, trading on TOCOM by foreign companies represented about 1.6 per cent of total turnover.

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