The exchange business is a BUSINESS. A BUSINESS! Not a national asset. So why be so sentimental about who owns it or runs it, as long as the same regulator regulates it?
There’s no nationalism. Not any more. A Singapore company doesn’t have to list in Singapore. Creative listed on Nasdaq. So did Pacnet. In the same vein, China companies list in Singapore. They also list in Hong Kong, in Nasdaq and NYSE.
Companies, at least those from the advanced world, aren’t nationalistic. They list where they believe investors are, where they can get the best valuations, the highest visibility, the best combination of benefits vs costs (compliance, regulation, fees, etc).
If that means going to an overseas exchange, so be it.
Ditto, stock market investors aren’t nationalistic either. Singaporean investors don’t just buy Singapore stocks. They routinely buy Malaysian, US, Hong Kong, China stocks, etc.
They’re in it to make money, after all.
A stock exchange doesn’t just trade local companies or local products. Apart from S-chips and other foreign companies, SGX offers derivatives on stock indices, currencies, energy, commodities, etc. all of which are based on foreign underlyings and aimed at global investors. Ditto for all other exchanges today.
So why be so fearful who owns or runs a stock exchange?
And why cling on to 19th-century backward thinking that an exchange is a national asset or a national icon?
It clearly is neither.
It’s nothing national. It’s just business.