The Canadian National Stock Exchange (CNSX) announced yesterday that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has designated it a "Designated offshore securities market" under Regulation S of the Securities Act of 1933. The designation applies to CNSX and Pure Trading.

Regulation S allows companies to bypass SEC registration requirements where offerings and sales of securities occur outside the U.S. The exemptions were created in order to encourage investments in U.S. companies by non-U.S. investors and provide safe harbours with respect to offers and sales by issuers, distributors and affiliates under Rule 903 and offshore resales under Rule 904. Regulation S, however, imposes a number of resale restrictions to ensure sales to a U.S. person do not occur.

The SEC designation, however, means that restricted securities may now generally be resold on CNSX or Pure Trading without the seller having to determine whether the buyer is in the U.S. or a U.S. person, as would otherwise have been the case.