Singapore authorities turn down Noble Group’s relisting plan

Noble Group
Noble Group Ltd. signage sits on display outside during an investor day in Singapore. Photographer: Nicky Loh/Bloomberg

Singapore’s central bank and the Singapore Exchange said on Thursday they have decided not to allow Noble Group Ltd to transfer its listing status to a restructured entity.

The decision follows a review in an ongoing probe into Noble by the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA), central bank MAS and Singapore Exchange’s regulatory unit said in a joint statement.

MAS and SGX RegCo have concluded that there are significant uncertainties about the financial position of New Noble,” the statement said.

“It would be imprudent to allow the re-listing as investors will not be able to trade in New Noble’s shares on an informed basis.”

Noble, once Asia’s top commodity trader, has seen its market value all but wiped out from $6 billion in early 2015. Amid the probe by Singapore authorities, Noble pushed back last month’s deadline to complete its debt restructuring deal to Dec. 11.

Noble had planned to list its smaller Asia-centric thermal coal business after completing the company’s overhaul, but this was thrown into doubt last month after the joint investigation announced by MAS, CAD and ACRA.

The proposed listing was a key part of Noble’s restructuring plan.

At the time of the last extension, Noble had said it had made good progress towards completing the restructuring but the timeline had been delayed “due to the additional time required to fully address all concerns of the regulators.”

The company, whose shares were suspended from trading from Nov. 19 due to the restructuring, had previously said that it was co-operating fully with the authorities in their investigation.

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Noble Group warns of more losses amid rising restructuring costs

Reuters