2023 : A Year in Review
In a year that saw interest rates at record levels and increased geopolitical tensions, 2023 also marked clear steps towards the critical climate transition – with COP28 in Dubai becoming the first COP meeting to call for a transitioning away from fossil fuels.
As a new year enters its first act, we look back on the main news and announcements from the Luxembourg Stock Exchange (LuxSE) and highlight key figures and some of the ways in which the exchange continued to expand its global footprint, pioneer sustainable finance and develop its activities in 2023.
Strong activity levels
Despite a challenging macroeconomic and geopolitical context, in 2023, LuxSE welcomed a total of 13,900 new securities. This represents a 13% increase compared to 2022 and a record year for listings since 2007.
The total amount raised on LuxSE’s markets in 2023 represents the equivalent of EUR 1.2 trillion, an 8% increase year-over-year, and an impressive amount which has served to fund projects and fuel investments all over the world.
92 new issuers from 24 countries joined our exchange in 2023, bringing the total number of active issuers last year to 479, issuing securities across 53 currencies. This means LuxSE now serves 1,800 issuers across 100 countries. Thanks to the trust and loyalty of these issuers, LuxSE now holds a market share of 34% in terms of international bonds listed worldwide according to figures from Dealogic.
With 42,000+ total securities listed, including 38,000+ debt instruments, LuxSE is the undisputed reference venue for Eurobonds and continues to serve issuers from a broad range of industries and geographies.
But the positive growth was not just on the listing side of our activities. In 2023, bond trading activity on LuxSE increased by more than 130% compared to the previous year. If we look at LuxXPrime alone, a window on LuxSE’s trading platform dedicated to retail-sized trading in fixed-income securities – and now offering 1,500 carefully selected securities – the number of trades was up by more than 200% year-over-year.
You can find out more about the evolution of LuxXPrime here.
The UN-awarded home of sustainable finance
Similar to previous years, 2023 was shaped by the strides taken in sustainable finance through the leading platform for international sustainable debt securities, LGX.
2023 marked the halfway point between the signing of the Paris Agreement and its 2030 goals. At the end of this important year, LGX counted more than 3,600 securities on its UN-awarded platform – including 1,870+ green, social, sustainability and sustainability-linked bonds making up a total issued amount of EUR 977 billion from more than 300 issuers based in 60 countries throughout the world.
Among the milestone bond listings that we celebrated in 2023, we find :
- The first Cabo Verdean green bond focused on the blue economy, issued by the International Investment Bank and known as the iib Marine and Ocean-Based Blue Bond was admitted on our exchange and displayed on LGX thanks to our cooperation with Bolsa de Valores de Cabo Verde
- During our annual International Women’s Day celebrations, we welcomed the first gender bond from Sub-Saharan Africa issued by NMB Bank Plc in Tanzania to LuxSE
On the topic of gender finance, 2023 was also an important year at LuxSE when it came to advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment. Not only did LuxSE become a founding member of the Luxembourg Women in Finance Charter, but we also dedicated our COP28 side event with UN Women to gender finance, released a market study on the gender-focused bond market and launched a a new LGX Academy course dedicated entirely to the topic.
Focus on Emerging Markets
As the world’s leading exchange for the listing of international debt securities and the home of sustainable finance, at LuxSE, we see it as our duty to cast our net of expertise and experience as wide as possible.
In 2023, this led to several new and complementary agreements being established. Throughout the course of the year, we marked important efforts to unite international capital markets by joining forces with Chongwa (Macao) Financial Asset Exchange Co., Ltd (MOX), China Everbright Bank, the Abu Dhabi Exchange and Bolsa de Valores de Cabo Verde (BVC) to advance the sustainable finance agenda in new regions.
The LGX Academy’s expert lecturers also continued to focus their efforts on bolstering sustainable finance education in emerging markets, which included :
- Trainings in Sri Lanka through our partnership with United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP) and the Ivory Coast following a 2022 Memorandum of Understanding with Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières (BRVM)
- As the International Certifying Institution of Governart and the Santiago Stock Exchange’s ESG Analysis Certification programme, LuxSE issued certificates to participants from Chile, Mexico and Guatemala in 2023
- Co-hosting the International Finance Corporation (IFC)’s 3-day Green Bond Technical Assistance Programme (GB TAP) Green, Social and Sustainability (GSS) Bonds Executive Programme in Luxembourg in November which gathered senior bankers from 17 different emerging economies, representing 22 different financial institutions
Digitalising capital markets
True to our mission of furthering the green and digital transformation of international capital markets, 2023 was marked by a number of innovative DLT listings at LuxSE.
In June, we welcomed the first digital Climate Awareness Bond issued by the European Investment Bank (EIB) on our exchange, with the World Bank then making history in October by issuing the very first financial instrument issued on a Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) and admitted to trading in the European Union (EU) on our EU regulated market.
To close out a year of many DLT milestones, in December, we celebrated the display of the 1,000th green bond on LGX, and it was the EUR 10 million digitally-native green bond issued by Société Générale which brought us over the 1,000 mark.
Want to learn more about what DLT brings to capital markets ? Read our dedicated blog post on the topic here.
In 2023, we also marked the launch of LuxTrader, a new tool through which we offer our trading members a more efficient and cost-effective way to connect to our trading platform.
Check out our blog to learn more about developments on the trading side in 2023.
Never strangers to international recognition, 2023 saw LuxSE take home the title of Exchange of the Year for the sixth time since 2017 at Environmental Finance’s Bond Awards 2023 for our trailblazing efforts in the realm of gender finance and emerging markets.
Several of our colleagues were recognised as experts in their fields at different occasions and we continued to contribute to industry standards and policy developments through participations in multiple working groups on both national, international and EU level.
But a new recognition came in just a few months shy of the third anniversary of the LGX DataHub when, in May, together with the International Capital Market Association (ICMA), we announced that ICMA’s new database dedicated to sustainable bond data would be powered by data from the LGX DataHub.
Thanks to the data available on the LGX DataHub, several major international players also published market studies in 2023, including the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which produced a report on the GSSS bond market in developing countries, assessing the role of donors in supporting GSSS issuances of the public sector in developing countries.
New year, new beginnings
2023 was an active year at LuxSE, marked by powerful impact stories, milestones and new developments.
We look forward to accelerating the green transition and contributing to more sustainable and inclusive capital markets – that drive a positive real-world impact – throughout 2024.
Make sure you keep an eye on Beyond the Bell this year and stay tuned for fresh insights and new stories from LuxSE !
By Ellan Dineen
Photo : Luxembourg Stock Exchange
This article was originally published here