The Frankfurt Stock Exchange, with its electronic trading platform Xetra, is the location of the largest stock exchange in Germany. In addition to Xetra and Frankfurt floor trading, there are smaller stock exchanges in Stuttgart, Munich, Hamburg, Berlin and Düsseldorf, some of which specialise in individual security classes or regional companies. It is the responsibility of the federal states to instruct and supervise the operation of the exchanges.
Mixed structure of public and private law
Deutsche Börse AG has been commissioned by the State of Hesse to operate the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. This means that it provides all the necessary technical and personnel services for the functioning of the marketplaces. For this it receives fees, the trading fees, from the users.
Deutsche Börse AG is thus the operator of the public "Frankfurt Stock Exchange" with its two trading centres "Xetra" and "Frankfurt Stock Exchange". Deutsche Börse is a company organised under private law whose shares are listed and tradable on the stock exchange.
The carrier of trading in warrants, certificates and other structured products is Börse Frankfurt Zertifikate AG.
Executive bodies of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange
Four Exchange bodies ensure orderly trading: the Exchange Council, the Management Board, the Sanctions Committee, the Trading Surveillance Office HÜSt.
Stock exchanges regulate their structures, their market models and the use of their trading platforms through statutes and administrative acts. All organs of the public law institution act sovereignly and have the possibility to apply administrative coercive measures.
The scope and limits of these powers result from legal requirements, in particular from the Stock Exchange Act. The aim of the Stock Exchange Act is to ensure that the stock exchanges guarantee fair and efficient trading and orderly settlement of the transactions concluded on them.
The Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), based in Frankfurt, is responsible for supervising all areas of finance in Germany.
Listing of securities
Shares, fixed-income securities, fund units, warrants and certificates are traded on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. These have either been admitted to the Regulated Market or included in the Open Market.
Admission to the Regulated Market is carried out by the Exchange Management at the request of the issuer of the respective security. Except in exceptional cases, the issuer must submit an issue prospectus approved by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority. A further examination of the issuer and its creditworthiness does not take place due to the statutory provisions for admission. As a result of the admission of its securities to stock exchange trading, the issuer is subject to subsequent obligations, e.g. the obligation to issue ad hoc announcements, the preparation of interim and, if necessary, quarterly reports.
Inclusion in the Regulated Unofficial Market takes place at the request of a trading participant without an issue prospectus being required. This does not result in any post-admission obligations for the issuer. However, in one part of the Open Market, the Entry Standard, those trading participants who have initiated the inclusion of a security also have the obligation to ensure the publication of the issuer's annual financial statements and interim reports. In addition, they must ensure that the issuer publishes on its website notices which correspond to ad hoc notices.
Admission of participants
Companies that commercially trade in or broker transactions in exchange-traded items may participate in exchange trading. These companies require an admission by the stock exchange management. Exchange traders who also require admission trade on the stock exchange for these companies.
Private investors do not have direct access to the stock exchange, but must make use of an admitted trading participant, a credit institution or a financial services institution.
May 2019, © Deutsche Börse AG