India was among the top five markets, globally, in terms of equity fundraising despite the quantum of funds raised declining by 43 per cent. According to a report by Kotak Investment Banking, funds to the tune of $16.4 billion were transacted via equity capital market (ECM) activity in India in 2022.
India’s outperformance comes on the back of a sharper decline in ECM activity in major markets such as the United Kingdom, Australia and Japan. ECM activity globally took a hit on account of heightened volatility amid rising interest rates.
What Is the Equity Capital Market (ECM)?
The equity capital market (ECM) refers to the arena where financial institutions help companies raise equity capital and where stocks are traded. It consists of the primary market for private placements, initial public offerings (IPOs), and warrants; and the secondary market, where existing shares are sold, as well as futures, options, and other listed securities are traded.
Understanding Equity Capital Markets (ECMs)
The equity capital market (ECM) is broader than just the stock market because it covers a wider range of financial instruments and activities. These include the marketing and distribution and allocation of issues, initial public offerings (IPOs), private placements, derivatives trading, and book building. The main participants in the ECM are investment banks, broker-dealers, retail investors, venture capitalists, private equity firms, and angel investors.
Together with the bond market, the ECM channels money provided by savers and depository institutions to investors. As part of the capital markets, the ECM, leads, in theory, to the efficient allocation of resources within a market economy.
Primary Equity Market
The primary equity market, where companies issue new securities, is divided into a private placement market, and a primary public market. In the private placement market, companies raise private equity through unquoted shares that are sold to investors directly. In the primary public market, private companies can go public through IPOs, and listed companies can issue new equity through seasoned issues.
Secondary Equity Market
The secondary market, where no new capital is created, is what most people typically think of as the “stock market”. It is where existing shares are bought and sold, and consists of stock exchanges and over-the-counter (OTC) markets, where a network of dealers trade stocks without an exchange acting as an intermediary.