SINGAPORE (Dec 13): IPO volumes in 2017 have reached the highest level since 2007 with a total of US$206.6 billion ($279.3 billion) raised in 1,694 listings, according to the latest research from Baker McKenzie.

“The IPO market in 2017 has put in its best performance in 10 years," says Koen Vanhaerents, global head of capital markets at Baker McKenzie.  "A more stable political environment in some of the key markets, combined with strong economic growth, has boosted both the number of listings and the volume of capital raised.”

Of the total number of IPOs globally, more than two-thirds took place on exchanges based in Asia Pacific, accounting for 45% of the total capital raised globally.

Exchanges in Asia Pacific saw issuance totalling US$92.4 billion in 2017, some 13% higher than a year ago.

In Singapore, the domestic market alone is set to raise about US$5.4 billion in capital from 22 IPOs, more than trebling in value compared to 2016.

Telecoms firm NetLink NBN Trust raised US$1.7 billion on the mainboard of the Singapore Exchange in July, creating the largest IPO in Singapore since 2011.

See: NetLink NBN Trust launches largest Singapore IPO in 6 years

Notably, there were 17 cross-border listings by Singapore issuers, with total value up 23% year-on-year to US$1.5 billion.

“Looking ahead, Hong Kong is likely to remain the global leader in cross-border listings, particularly as Chinese firms increasingly seek overseas investment. Singapore-based issuers are also active in cross-border IPOs, choosing the Hong Kong Stock Exchange as their main cross-border listing destination in the region over the past year,” says Ashok Lalwani, head of the international capital markets practice in Asia Pacific at Baker McKenzie.

"With key risks to the global economic outlook easing, we expect IPOs to hit a new post-financial crisis high in 2018," Vanhaerents adds. "We recently forecast that domestic IPO activity will continue to rise, to a peak of over US$220 billion in 2018."