France, Belgium Lift Short-Selling Ban on Financial Stocks

As reported by Heather Smith and Ben Moshinsky from bloomberg, France and Belgium ended bans on the short-selling of financial stocks, the countries’ financial markets regulators said today.

The French curbs, barring short sales on companies including France’s biggest banks BNP Paribas SA, Societe Generale SA and Credit Agricole SA, expired Feb. 11 and haven’t been renewed, France’s Autorite des Marches Financiers said in a statement on its website without giving further reasons for the decision.

“The lower volatility of the markets” made the ban no longer necessary, Belgium’s Financial Services and Markets Authority said in its statement.

France, Belgium, Spain and Italy moved to ban short selling in August in an effort to stabilize markets after European banks including Societe Generale hit their lowest levels since the credit crisis of 2008.

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