India may get thrown out of MSCI Indices

MSCI Inc. (NYSE: MSCI), a leading provider of research-based indexes and analytics, announced today that it is closely monitoring developments related to the concerted announcement by three Indian stock exchanges, including the two principal exchanges, of the imposition of anti-competitive measures restricting the accessibility of the Indian equity market.

MSCI is evaluating the measures’ potential impact on existing financial products and the future accessibility of the Indian equity market for international institutional investors more generally.

In a clearly negative development for the accessibility of the Indian equity market for international institutional investors, the exchanges’ announcement made on February 9, 2018 would impose, following the expiration of contractual notice periods, a set of restrictions on the use of traded price data inconsistent with the practices of any other market in MSCI’s Emerging Markets Index series and could result in an unprecedented disruption of trading in financial products in markets around the world.

Based on the exchanges’ press release, we understand that the exchanges do not seek to impose a precipitous or disorderly wind down of the various products that would be affected in many markets around the world.

Nonetheless, given the breadth of the application of the changes referred to in the announcement, we believe that if the changes are put into effect, the result will be disruptive and harmful to international institutional investors in Indian equities whether accessing the market onshore or offshore.

MSCI strongly suggests the Indian exchanges and their regulator, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), reconsider this unprecedented anti-competitive action before it leads to any unnecessary disruptions in trading or a potential change in the market classification of the Indian market in the MSCI Indexes.

– Press Release by MSCI