London Stock Exchange is Already Working to Reduce Trading Hours

The LSE tabled five proposals on Tuesday, ranging from keeping the current trading hours from 8 am to 4:30 pm and shortening it by up to 90 minutes.

The London Exchange Group, which operates the London Stock Exchange (LSE), has begun to consult with market players to see if they want a reduction in trading hours, signaling that the company is available for changes that correspond to a greater balance between the professional and personal lives of workers in the sector.

The LSE tabled five proposals on Tuesday, ranging from keeping the current trading hours from 8 am to 4:30 pm and shortening it by up to 90 minutes. All change options would result in trading starting after the current time. Trading companies, asset managers, regulators, issuers and individual investors have until January 31 to respond.

Last month, the Association for Financial Markets in Europe, which represents trading companies and banks, and the Investment Association, the UK’s lobby group for asset managers, consulted with the region’s exchanges about whether the trading period could be bad reduced. Benefits may include improved gender diversity and the ability to retain people with family commitments.

However, there are also structural factors at play. LSE chairman David Schwimmer pointed to investors’ tendency to wait for the session to close and buy, rather than trade throughout the day. Some market observers link this to the expansion of price-dependent index funds at the end of the session.