Insights into euro area statistics. Presenting statistics with short explanations, in an easy-to-share format

19 OCTOBER 2018

Developments in the market value of listed shares vary across the euro area

Since September 2017 the market value of euro area listed shares has hovered around EUR 8 trillion, surpassing the EUR 7 trillion peak recorded during the summer of 2007 at the start of the financial crisis. The “corporate” sector is by far the largest issuing sector, accounting for approximately 80% of the total value. The market value of the “other financial” sector is now over twice that of the “banking” sector.

Listed shares are an important part of the euro area financial landscape. They are a major financing and investment vehicle for borrowers and investors, but variations in share prices can affect their wealth. Statistics on listed shares are therefore significant for financial and monetary analyses.

During the recent financial crisis, the value of euro area listed shares fell by 60% in less than two years, from EUR 7 trillion in May 2007 to less than EUR 3 trillion in February 2009. It then took six years to regain the levels seen before the crisis, and since September 2017 it has been hovering around EUR 8 trillion.

Chart 1 – Market value of euro area listed shares denominated in all currencies

(EUR billions; August 2018)

Source: ECB securities issues statistics

Listed shares are issued by three main sectors. The corporate sector is by far the largest, accounting for approximately 80% of the total value of all listed shares in the euro area (August 2018). The banking sector was the second largest sector until March 2012, since when it has been overtaken by the “other financial” sector (with the exception of November 2012). The “other financial” sector comprises, among others, insurance companies, finance companies, securities brokers and dealers. According to the most recent statistics, the market value of listed shares issued by other financial institutions is now more than twice the market value of those issued by the banking sector, hovering around EUR 1.3 trillion since January 2018. Since the financial crisis, developments in the market values of the banking sector have followed a different path (see Chart 2).

There are considerable variations from country to country. Check out the interactive charts to see how your country is performing in comparison with other euro area members. 

Chart 2 – Development of listed shares of euro area corporations, banks and other financials before and since the financial crisis

(EUR billions, all currencies; August 2018)

Listed shares and debt securities are securities that offer an alternative to traditional bank financing, such as bank loans. Securities markets developments may influence the transmission mechanism of monetary policy and may also affect the financial structure of the euro area. In particular, listed shares and debt securities are major financing and investment vehicle for borrowers and investors, but variations in share prices can affect their wealth. Hence, these statistics contribute to and enhance the financial and monetary analyses of the euro area.

Listed shares include all shares with prices listed on a recognised stock exchange or other form of regulated market. They are financial assets which represent property rights in corporations. They generally entitle the holder to a share in the profits of the corporations (in the form of dividends) and to a share in their net assets in the event of liquidation.

Euro area statistics on listed shares are broken down into stocks and transactions. Stocks – also referred to as outstanding amounts – capture the market value of listed shares. Transactions cover (i) new issues, where the issuer sells newly-created listed shares for cash, and (ii) redemptions, where the issuer buys back listed shares for cash. 

Listed shares exclude shares/units issued by money market funds and other investment funds. See “Insights” of 20 October 2017 to find out more about investment funds in the euro area.

The “corporates” sector refers to non-financial corporations and the “other financials” sector comprises various non-bank financial corporations such as insurance companies, finance companies, securities brokers and dealers and holding companies (that do not manage other units).

The statistics referred to here are the monthly securities issues statistics (SEC) available via the ECB’s Statistical Data Warehouse (SDW), which can be accessed using the code listed in the section headed “References”.

Quarterly statistics on quoted and unquoted equity are also available using the quarterly sector accounts (QSA) statistics. These quarterly statistics may differ from the securities issues statistics owing to methodological differences. They are also available via the SDW and are included in the interactive visualisations on the “Our statistics” website).

Euro area securities issues statistics are collected by the national central banks under a single legal framework, applying the same methodological guidelines across all euro area countries. This makes the monthly statistics comparable across countries, allowing the statistics to be used for country comparison and international comparability purposes.

Securities issues statistics conform to the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010).

Find out more about listed shares and securities:

Read more about securities statistics on the ECB’s website

Euro area securities issues statistics press releases

Release calendar for euro area securities issues statistics

Handbook on securities statistics (international standards)

The legal framework can be found in Part 12 of Annex II of Guideline ECB/2014/15 on monetary and financial statistics

Securities issues statistics (SEC) in the ECB Statistical Data Warehouse:

  • Euro area securities issues statistics in euro can be found in the ECB Statistical Data Warehouse using the code: SEC.M.*.1000.F51100.M.1.EUR.E.Z
  • Euro area securities issues statistics covering all currencies can be found using the code: SEC.M.*.1000.F51100.M.1.Z01.E.Z

Read more about financial accounts statistics on ECB's website

Read more about securities holdings statistics on ECB's website