By James A. Loyola
The Philippine Stock Exchange, Inc. (PSE) has launched its web-based platform called PSE EASy (Electronic Allocation System) to allow local small investors (LSI) to subscribe to Initial Public Offering (IPO) shares online.
The bourse currently has an LSI program which requires companies conducting an IPO to allocate 10 percent of the offer shares to LSIs. Investors can participate in the LSI program by subscribing to a minimum board lot and by purchasing IPO shares that will not exceed P100,000 in value.
“We noticed that the take-up of IPO shares by LSIs has never ever reached 2 percent in the past,” noted PSE President and CEO Ramon S. Monzon.
He explained that, “prior to our launch of PSE EASy, LSIs who want to avail of IPO shares had to go to designated IPO kiosks in select Metro Manila malls to secure and fill up a subscription form, bring this form to their broker’s offices for acknowledgment, and then bring the same back again to the kiosk to make the payment.”
Monzon said this is “a very cumbersome process for a LSI who could only invest then a maximum of P25,000 per IPO. In furtherance of PSE’s financial inclusion initiatives, the first thing we did was to increase the maximum limit to P100,000 per IPO.”
“We then designed an online LSI platform that will make subscribing to IPO’s more accessible (even to investors in the provinces), efficient and convenient,” he added.
Investors who wish to take part in the LSI program of an IPO should create an account on the PSE EASy website, which can be accessed through https://easy.pse.com.ph
To successfully complete the registration, the account must be confirmed by the stockbrokerage firm where the investor has an account. Once the account has been approved, the investor can already participate in the LSI whenever there is an IPO.
The PSE EASy mobile application will also be introduced in the third quarter of 2019. Except for account registration which should be done on the website, all other PSE EASy functions for investors will be available in the mobile app.
Among these functions include the submission of LSI subscription forms, updating of LSI subscription like adding or reducing shares, prompts when there is an upcoming or on-going IPO or when there are other relevant updates.
“We noted that most of our investors now trade online and they are very savvy when it comes to using mobile apps. We want to continue leveraging on technology to make investing in offerings particularly in an IPO readily available to them,” Monzon said.