usiness investment opportunities on a global scale

A stock market rebound in the first half of 2019 pushed the global market capitalization a bit higher compared with 12 months ago, says a report from the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE).

The industry trade group for stock exchanges and clearing firms reports that the global market cap rose by 17.8% through the first half, pushing the global market cap up by 1.6%, as of June 30, from the same point in 2018.

The Asia-Pacific region led the way in the first half, jumping 21.3%. At the same time, the Americas rose by 17.6% and the EMEA region climbed 13.6%.

Despite the increase in market cap, the value of equity trades decreased by 11% globally in the first half of 2019, compared with the same period a year ago, the WFE reports.

At the same time, it also says the number of trades increased by 11.4% globally.

The report also shows that new listings and investment flows declined over the first six months of 2019.

Specifically, initial public offerings (IPOs) were down 35.2% in the first half of 2019 compared to 2018.

The WFE reports that IPO activity declined in all regions. It also notes that the Asia-Pacific region accounted for almost 60% of global IPOs, raising over US$27 billion.

The report shows that the value of trading in exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the first half fell compared to the same period in 2018.

The value of ETF trades is down 13.6% compared with 2018, driven by decreases in all regions.

Trading in exchange-traded derivatives rose in the first half, with options-trading volume up 12% year over year, and futures trading 9.8% higher.

“These gains were driven by increases in volumes traded in a wide range of products, and especially in stock index options and futures and commodity futures,” it says.