Frequently Asked Questions 

Chapter 5

Market Operations and Trading


Initial Public Offering (IPO)



How can investors know what companies are planning to list on SEHK soon? 

Investors may go to the “Application Proof & PHIP” section of the HKEXnews website or the Growth Enterprise Market (“GEM”) website for information.

An Application Proof is a draft listing document that is submitted with a listing application to the Stock Exchange (or to the Securities and Futures Commission in the case of a relevant collective investment scheme) and it will be published on the HKEXnews website or the GEM website (as the case may be) when submitted to the Exchange.

 A  PHIP is a near-final listing document which provides information about an applicant before it issues its final listing document.

With effect from 1 October 2013, the Main Board Listing Rules and GEM Listing Rules require listing applicants to publish their Application Proofs and Post Hearing Information Packs (“PHIPs”) on the HKEXnews website or GEM website (as the case may be).

As part of the transitional arrangements, the requirement to publish an Application Proof will be suspended from 1 October 2013 to 31 March 2014 (both dates inclusive).  However, a PHIP is required to be published during such suspension period.

It should be noted that neither the Application Proof nor the PHIP constitutes a final listing document. Investors should not make investment decisions based on information in an Application Proof or a PHIP; but they should read the final listing document subsequently issued by the applicants, which together with other announcements about the offer are posted on the HKEXnews website or GEM website (as the case may be) upon listing. 



How can investors obtain prospectuses and subscription forms for IPO? 

Distribution points of prospectuses and subscription forms for IPO are set out in the prospectuses of issuers. Investors can search for the prospectuses and announcements from the Listed Company Information section on the HKEXnews website. They may also check with the sponsor or underwriter or receiving banks for details about the distribution of prospectuses and subscription forms as well as application procedures.

Investors with an Investor Account at CCASS can apply for new issues electronically through HKSCC via the CCASS Phone Operations Hotline or CCASS Internet System or by submitting 'EIPO Application Instruction Input Request Form' to the Customer Service Centre before the application end time and date.

Brokers and custodians can also apply for new shares for clients via the EIPO service provided by CCASS. That will save investors the trouble of having to complete an IPO application form.



Which forms should investors use to subscribe for new shares? White or Yellow Forms?  What is the difference?  

Investors can use either the White or Yellow Form to subscribe for new shares but not both forms.  Multiple or suspected multiple applications are liable to be rejected.

Investors who want physical shares to be issued in their names should use the White Form while those who want shares to be deposited directly into CCASS and registered in the name of HKSCC Nominees Limited should use the Yellow Form.

One of the main differences between White and Yellow Forms is that White Form subscribers usually have to wait for the mailing of physical share certificates and can normally trade the stock only after receiving the share certificates and having them deposited with brokers.  Investors may not be able to catch the first trading day as they may not have received the physical shares certificates before trading of the new shares commences.  However, as the allotted shares of Yellow Form subscribers have already been deposited into CCASS, they can trade the stocks through their brokers on the first trading day of the new issues.



How can investors apply for new shares electronically?  

Investors can subscribe for new shares electronically through one of the following channels:

  1. The designated website of the White Form eIPO service provider appointed by the newly listed company (a newly listed company may appoint a designated service provider to provide White Form eIPO services);

  2. If the listing company makes use of the Electronic Initial Public Offering (EIPO) service under CCASS, Investor Participants in CCASS can apply for new shares by inputting EIPO application instructions through the CCASS Phone Operations Hotline (2979 7888) or the CCASS Internet System ( Please refer to the “Investment Service Centre” of the HKEX website for the details about the Investor Account services.

  3. If the listing company makes use of the EIPO service under CCASS, investors who have not opened Investor Accounts in CCASS can contact their brokers or other intermediaries to apply for new shares electronically.

If an investor applies via the first channel, refund due to partially or fully unsuccessful application or due to price adjustment are effected through bank transfers or by cheque. Please contact the relevant White Form eIPO service provider for information.

If an Investor Participant applies via the second channel, refund will be credited into its accounts.

If an investor applies via the third channel, refund will be credited into the account of the broker or other intermediary who input the application for him/her.



What are multiple applications?  

In Hong Kong public offerings, an application is liable to be rejected if the investor has made more than one application (even for joint name application).



How can investors know IPO allotment results?  

Investors can search for IPO allotment results from Listed Company Information under the HKEXnews website. They can also ask the relevant share registrar about the results. Information on how to contact share registrars can be accessed on “Company/Securities Profile” under “Investment Service Centre” of the HKEX website. Newly listed companies may also announce allotment results on their own websites. Arrangements for the announcement of allotment results are set out in prospectuses.



What is the allotment basis?   

The allotment basis depends on the number of valid applications for subscription for the IPO shares. Normally, the share registrar appointed by the issuing company first screens out multiple, incomplete or wrongly filled applications. Then, shares are allotted according to the basis of allocation as determined by the sponsor and the newly listed company.  In the event of over-subscription, the newly listed company must increase the number of shares in the public subscription tranche by transferring shares from the placing tranche (if there is a placing tranche) by virtue of the claw back mechanism.  Investors should refer to the relevant section in the prospectus.



What should investors do if the subscribed for a new share issue and received neither share certificates nor a refund cheque after trading in the company's shares had started?  

In applying for shares, investors should note how and when the results of applications will be announced. These are stated in the prospectus and application forms. If investors fail to receive any notice after the stated time, they should check with the sponsor or the share registrar of the new issue.