Secondary market offering

Last updated

A secondary market offering, according to the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), is a registered offering of a large block of a security that has been previously issued to the public. The blocks being offered may have been held by large investors or institutions, and proceeds of the sale go to those holders, not the issuing company. Also called secondary distribution. [1]

In the United States, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) is a private corporation that acts as a self-regulatory organization (SRO). FINRA is the successor to the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. (NASD) and the member regulation, enforcement, and arbitration operations of the New York Stock Exchange. It is a non-governmental organization that regulates member brokerage firms and exchange markets. The government agency which acts as the ultimate regulator of the securities industry, including FINRA, is the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A public offering is the offering of securities of a company or a similar corporation to the public. Generally, the securities are to be listed on a stock exchange. In most jurisdictions, a public offering requires the issuing company to publish a prospectus detailing the terms and rights attached to the offered security, as well as information on the company itself and its finances. Many other regulatory requirements surround any public offering and they vary according to jurisdiction.

A secondary offering is not dilutive to existing shareholders since no new shares are created. The proceeds from the sale of the securities do not benefit the issuing company in any way. The offered shares are privately held by shareholders of the issuing company which may be directors or other insiders (such as venture capitalists) who may be looking to diversify their holdings. Usually however, the increase in available shares allows more institutions to take non-trivial positions in the issuing company which may benefit the trading liquidity of the issuing company's shares.

A secondary market offering should not be confused with a follow-on offering, otherwise known as a subsequent offering, or a dilutive secondary offering. In a follow-on offering, the company itself places new shares onto the market, thus diluting the existing shares. [2] [3] "Secondary market offering" can be understood as an offering on the secondary market, and is thus different from a secondary offering on the primary market — in other words, an offering following an initial, primary-market offering. A follow-on offering which is the second offering from a company can be understood as a secondary offering on a primary market, which is where the confusion between a dilutive (follow-on) and a non-dilutive secondary market offering possibly comes from. If a company were to make a third, primary-market offering, this would be a follow-on offering which is not a secondary market offering. "Secondary offering" as described in this article is an offering on the secondary market which is non-dilutive, and is thus not a follow-on offering.

A follow-on offering is an issuance of stock subsequent to the company's initial public offering. A follow-on offering can be either of two types : dilutive and non-dilutive. A secondary offering is an offering of securities by a shareholder of the company. A follow on offering is preceded by release of prospectus similar to IPO: a Follow-on Public Offer (FPO).

Secondary market company

The secondary market, also called the aftermarket and follow on public offering is the financial market in which previously issued financial instruments such as stock, bonds, options, and futures are bought and sold. Another frequent usage of "secondary market" is to refer to loans which are sold by a mortgage bank to investors such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

The primary market is the part of the capital market that deals with the issuance and sale of equity-backed securities to investors directly by the issuer. Investor buy securities that were never traded before. Primary markets create long term instruments through which corporate entities raise funds from the capital market. It is also known as the New Issue Market (NIM).

See also

Corporate finance area of finance dealing with the sources of funding and the capital structure of corporations

Corporate finance is an area of finance that deals with sources of funding, the capital structure of corporations, the actions that managers take to increase the value of the firm to the shareholders, and the tools and analysis used to allocate financial resources. The primary goal of corporate finance is to maximize or increase shareholder value. Although it is in principle different from managerial finance which studies the financial management of all firms, rather than corporations alone, the main concepts in the study of corporate finance are applicable to the financial problems of all kinds of firms.

A seasoned equity offering or secondary equity offering (SEO) or capital increase is a new equity issue by an already publicly traded company. Seasoned offerings may involve shares sold by existing shareholders (non-dilutive), new shares (dilutive) or both. If the seasoned equity offering is made by an issuer that meets certain regulatory criteria, it may be a shelf offering.

An at-the-market (ATM) offering is a type of follow-on offering of stock utilized by publicly traded companies in order to raise capital over time. In an ATM offering, exchange-listed companies incrementally sell newly issued shares into the secondary trading market through a designated broker-dealer at prevailing market prices. The broker-dealer sells the issuing company's shares in the open market and receives cash proceeds from the transaction. The broker-dealer then delivers the proceeds to the issuing company where the cash can be used for a variety of purposes. A higher stock price means a greater amount of money can be raised. The issuing company is able to raise this kind of capital on an as-needed basis with the option to refrain from offering shares if the available prices on a particular day are unsatisfactory. ATM offerings can be started and stopped at any point, and they can also become more aggressive by selling more shares and raising more money when there is an opportunity in the market or additional need by the issuing company. ATMs can be positioned in advance of an upcoming liquidity event or major milestone to take advantage of increased liquidity and a rising stock price.


  1. "FINRA glossary definition of secondary offering". Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. 2010. Retrieved 2010.Check date values in: |access-date= (help)

Related Research Articles

Capital market financial market for medium and long-term capital raising

A capital market is a financial market in which long-term debt or equity-backed securities are bought and sold. Capital markets channel the wealth of savers to those who can put it to long-term productive use, such as companies or governments making long-term investments. Financial regulators like the Bank of England (BoE) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) oversee capital markets to protect investors against fraud, among other duties.

Financial market generic term for all markets in which trading takes place with capital

A financial market is a market in which people trade financial securities and derivatives such as futures and options at low transaction costs. Securities include stocks and bonds, and precious metals.

Security (finance) tradable financial asset

A security is a tradable financial asset. The term commonly refers to any form of financial instrument, but its legal definition varies by jurisdiction. In some jurisdictions, the term specifically excludes financial instruments other than equities and fixed income instruments. In some jurisdictions, it includes some instruments that are close to equities and fixed income, e.g., equity warrants. In some countries and languages, the term "security" is commonly used in day-to-day parlance to mean any form of financial instrument, even though the underlying legal and regulatory regime may not have such a broad definition.

Initial public offering (IPO) or stock market launch is a type of public offering in which shares of a company are sold to institutional investors and usually also retail (individual) investors; an IPO is underwritten by one or more investment banks, who also arrange for the shares to be listed on one or more stock exchanges. Through this process, colloquially known as floating, or going public, a privately held company is transformed into a public company. Initial public offerings can be used: to raise new equity capital for the company concerned; to monetize the investments of private shareholders such as company founders or private equity investors; and to enable easy trading of existing holdings or future capital raising by becoming publicly traded enterprises.

Public company Company that offers its securities for sale to the general public

A public company, publicly traded company, publicly held company, publicly listed company, or public limited company is a corporation whose ownership is dispersed among the general public in many shares of stock which are freely traded on a stock exchange or in over the counter markets. In some jurisdictions, public companies over a certain size must be listed on an exchange. A public company can be listed or unlisted.

Corporate action

A corporate action is an event initiated by a public company that will bring an actual change to the securities—equity or debt—issued by the company. Corporate actions are typically agreed upon by a company's board of directors and authorized by the shareholders. Examples of corporate actions include stock splits, dividends, mergers and acquisitions, rights issues, and spin-offs.

Shares outstanding are all the shares of a corporation or financial asset that have been authorized, issued and purchased by investors and are held by them. They have rights and represent ownership in the corporation by the person who holds the shares. They are distinguished from treasury shares, which are shares held by the corporation itself and have no exercisable rights. Shares outstanding plus treasury shares together amount to the number of issued shares.

Securities market securities market

Securities market is a component of the wider financial market where securities can be bought and sold between subjects of the economy, on the basis of demand and supply. Securities markets encompasses equity markets, bond markets and derivatives markets where prices can be determined and participants both professional and non professionals can meet.

A private investment in public equity, often called a PIPE deal, involves the selling of publicly traded common shares or some form of preferred stock or convertible security to private investors. It is an allocation of shares in a public company not through a public offering in a stock exchange. PIPE deals are part of the primary market. In the U.S., a PIPE offering may be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission on a registration statement or may be completed as an unregistered private placement.

Rights issue

A rights issue or rights offer is a dividend of subscription rights to buy additional securities in a company made to the company's existing security holders. When the rights are for equity securities, such as shares, in a public company, it is a non-dilutive pro rata way to raise capital. Rights issues are typically sold via a prospectus or prospectus supplement. With the issued rights, existing security-holders have the privilege to buy a specified number of new securities from the issuer at a specified price within a subscription period. In a public company, a rights issue is a form of public offering.

A reverse takeover or reverse merger takeover is the acquisition of a public company by a private company so that the private company can bypass the lengthy and complex process of going public. The transaction typically requires reorganization of capitalization of the acquiring company. Sometimes, conversely, the private company is bought by the public listed company through an asset swap and share issue.

OTC Markets Group Company operating an electronic inter-dealer securities quotation system

OTC Markets Group is an American financial market providing price and liquidity information for almost 10,000 over-the-counter (OTC) securities. The group has its headquarters in New York City. OTC-traded securities are organized into three markets to inform investors of opportunities and risks: OTCQX, OTCQB and Pink.

Stock dilution, also known as equity dilution, is the decrease in existing shareholders’ ownership of a company as a result of the company issuing new equity. New equity increases the total shares outstanding which has a dilutive effect on the ownership percentage of existing shareholders. This increase in the number of shares outstanding can result from a primary market offering, employees exercising stock options, or by issuance or conversion of convertible bonds, preferred shares or warrants into stock. This dilution can shift fundamental positions of the stock such as ownership percentage, voting control, earnings per share, and the value of individual shares.

An indication of interest (IOI), sometimes expression of interest (EOI), is an expression in finance that demonstrates a buyer's non-binding interest in buying a security in the stock market, often before it is available for purchase. IOIs are not required, but when a firm decides to issue one, they are primarily used on two occasions: before an IPO, and before an institution places a block trade.

Stock financial instrument

The stock of a corporation is all of the shares into which ownership of the corporation is divided. In American English, the shares are commonly called stocks. A single share of the stock represents fractional ownership of the corporation in proportion to the total number of shares. This typically entitles the stockholder to that fraction of the company's earnings, proceeds from liquidation of assets, or voting power, often dividing these up in proportion to the amount of money each stockholder has invested. Not all stock is necessarily equal, as certain classes of stock may be issued for example without voting rights, with enhanced voting rights, or with a certain priority to receive profits or liquidation proceeds before or after other classes of shareholders.