Fidelity sells stake in CMC Markets to below 5% after FCA’s CFD rules change

It looks like Fidelity Investments isn’t waiting for the big bounceback in shares of UK online brokers, following the $2 billion+ market cap hit taken by publicly traded brokers in the wake of the FCA’s recent tightening of rules around CFD brokerage and trading.

It was indicated in a recent regulatory filing that the US investment giant sold some of its stake late last week in UK online broker CMC Markets Plc (LON:CMCX).

(We believe that it was erroneously reported yesterday in a Forex industry blog that Fidelity was out buying CMC shares last week, when the opposite was actually the case.)

As was exclusively reported at LeapRate back in June, Fidelity had been quietly building its stake in CMC following CMC Markets’ IPO in February. By June, Fidelity had passed Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) to become CMC’s biggest outside shareholder behind only founder Peter Cruddas, with a 5.22% interest.

Fidelity had held onto that stake until last week, when it sold some LON:CMCX shares on Thursday, December 15, taking its interest in CMC to below 5% for the first time since June. It wasn’t indicated in the filing how far below 5% Fidelity actually sold.

CMC shares have actually had a little bounceback from the £0.91 low the stock hit in the wake of the FCA’s surprise moves, trading up 5.5% yesterday to £1.15. However that is still well below the £1.80-1.90 range the shares were trading in before the FCA dropped its bombshell on December 6. And, still less than half the value of CMC’s £2.40 per share February IPO price.

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