FSA denies information charge increase

Commenting after it was revealed that the FSA was considering breaking up the LSE’s Regulatory News Service’s monopoly of supplying information to the stock exchange, a spokesman said increased competition would drive down fees for releasing news.

Currently, companies are charged for RNS announcements via their listing fees, but any proposed changes would remove these costs from the fee.

There were fears that a change would increase costs and that some companies would be discouraged from issuing price-sensitive information.

But the FSA said that under the listing rules such announcements were obligatory.

Two information companies, PR Newswire and Business Wire, are believed to be considering offering an alternative to RNS.

Robin Hepburn, chief executive at PR firm Golin Harris, said: ‘The RNS technology is out of date and anything that can speed up getting information out must be a good thing.’

FD of Selfridges, Peter Williams, said: ‘RNS is technologically barbaric, though it is still useful to have one point that is seen as the oracle. An increase in suppliers of information could put up costs for brokers and investors.’


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