BNY Mellon survey reveals global corporate nervousness

An annual survey by BNY Mellon has revealed growing concerns among global companies about the coming year.

Firms are worried about such issues as the stability of the Eurozone, global systemic market risk and the prospect of increased regulatory oversight.

Some 76% of respondents say the situation in the Eurozone is the key driver in market confidence. Another 35% say upcoming regulations will reduce liquidity in the market in 2013.

The annual survey, Global Trends in Investor Relations, looks at responses from 800 companies in various industries, based in 59 countries across the globe.

It looks at how publically traded companies are managing their investor relations practices and the issues affecting them.

Of the firms surveyed, those based in Western Europe are the most concerned about the Eurozone crisis. North Americans also worry about the problems in Europe.

Firms based in emerging markets, however, are more concerned about global systemic risk and regulatory pressured than the Eurozone.

Christopher Kearns, deputy CEO of BNY Mellon’s depositary receipts business, says uncertainty is the underlying theme of this year’s survey.

This is leading company executives to dedicate more time to retaining existing institutional investors.

He says: “Issues like the Eurozone and ‘fiscal cliff’ continue to weigh heavily on markets globally. In response to these challenges, we’re seeing more firms seeking to boost their international shareholders.”

The survey has revealed chief executives spending over half their investor engagement time on existing client retention.

Boosting international shareholders has risen as a priority, too. A third of the survey respondents have named this a strategic focus, up from 20% last year.

Western Europe is the most enthusiastic region in pursuing investment outside domestic markets.

After the US and the UK, mainland China and Hong Kong are considered the most strategic places for stock listings over the next five years.

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