Market volatility amid the economic impact of the pandemic resulted in an influx of retail traders. However, now the tide has turned. On Friday, the French financial market supervisor, locally known as Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), revealed around a 35 percent decline in the number of individuals making equity transactions in the third quarter of 2022.

The regulator determined the number of French individuals who at least made one transaction of purchase or sale of equities in the quarter. The absolute number came in at around 600,000, which was lower than in the third quarter of 2021 but comparable to the same quarter of 2020.

There were 8.8 million transactions of equities executed in the third quarter in the French market. Though the figure was significantly lower than in the previous two years, it is still higher than in the pre-pandemic years.

Bearish Sentiments

In addition, the number of equity buyers in the quarter declined by 19 percent to 485,000. It was the lowest since the third quarter of 2020.

“The uncertainties weighing on the markets are reflected in the lower activity of individual investors. With the markets declining for the third consecutive quarter, retail investors appear to have taken a wait-and-see approach and held their positions,” the AMF stated.

This statement was supported by a 43 percent decline in the number of stock sellers as the absolute number came in at 362,000. However, the number of new retail investors, who either entered the market for the first time or have been inactive since 2018, stood at 39,000, which remained in line with the same period in recent years.

The latest figures defy earlier reports of AMF that highlighted a rise in retail investors in the French market. Earlier this year, the regulator warned against fraudulent offers of buying listed shares at preferential prices.

Market volatility amid the economic impact of the pandemic resulted in an influx of retail traders. However, now the tide has turned. On Friday, the French financial market supervisor, locally known as Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), revealed around a 35 percent decline in the number of individuals making equity transactions in the third quarter of 2022.

The regulator determined the number of French individuals who at least made one transaction of purchase or sale of equities in the quarter. The absolute number came in at around 600,000, which was lower than in the third quarter of 2021 but comparable to the same quarter of 2020.

There were 8.8 million transactions of equities executed in the third quarter in the French market. Though the figure was significantly lower than in the previous two years, it is still higher than in the pre-pandemic years.

Bearish Sentiments

In addition, the number of equity buyers in the quarter declined by 19 percent to 485,000. It was the lowest since the third quarter of 2020.

“The uncertainties weighing on the markets are reflected in the lower activity of individual investors. With the markets declining for the third consecutive quarter, retail investors appear to have taken a wait-and-see approach and held their positions,” the AMF stated.

This statement was supported by a 43 percent decline in the number of stock sellers as the absolute number came in at 362,000. However, the number of new retail investors, who either entered the market for the first time or have been inactive since 2018, stood at 39,000, which remained in line with the same period in recent years.

The latest figures defy earlier reports of AMF that highlighted a rise in retail investors in the French market. Earlier this year, the regulator warned against fraudulent offers of buying listed shares at preferential prices.