CFD Rights Issue


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Fact Checked

Written by Justin Grossbard

Edited by Sean A'Hearn

Fact Checked by David Levy

Edited by Sean A'Hearn

Fact Checked by David Levy

When it comes to money and investing it’s easy to lose money, or the potential of extra profits, by not being completely on the ball.


Key Learnings

  • Rights issues allow shareholders in a company to buy additional shares at a discounted rate
    Unlike other fundraising methods, rights issues are limited to existing shareholders
  • A rights issue can significantly impact the price of a CFD, creating opportunities for profit
  • Awareness of an upcoming rights issue can help you plan your CFD trading to the maximum advantage

Introduction to CFD Rights Issue

Understanding the dynamics of financial markets is crucial for investors, especially those involved in Contract for Difference (CFD) trading. One such complex yet significant aspect is the CFD rights issue. In this article, we’ll delve into the intricacies of CFD rights issues, exploring their definition, impact, and how you, as a CFD trader, can navigate through this financial terrain.

Quick Explanation of a CFD Rights Issue

A rights issue is a mechanism (or corporate action) through which companies raise capital by offering existing shareholders the opportunity to buy additional shares at a discounted price. The intriguing connection between CFDs and rights issues lies in the potential impact on CFD prices when a company announces a rights issue.

A CFD rights issue occurs when a company, in which a CFD trader holds a position, announces a rights issue. This announcement can have profound effects on the trader’s position and overall portfolio. Understanding the intricacies of CFD rights issues is vital for you, as a CFD trader, to make informed decisions.

This strategic move is designed to raise capital without resorting to external investors. It’s important to note that rights issues differ significantly from other fundraising methods like public offerings or private placements.

What are CFDs? Exploring Contract for Differences

Before diving into CFD rights issues, let’s establish a foundational understanding of CFDs. CFDs are derivative instruments that allow traders to speculate on the price movements of various financial instruments without owning the underlying assets. These financial instruments include a share CFD, commodity CFD or index CFD. These versatile financial tools have gained popularity for their flexibility and leverage capabilities.

The Mechanics of a Rights Issue in Finance

The mechanics of a rights issue can be complicated, but we’ve broken it down into steps to make it easier:

  • Firstly, the company will announce the issuance, specifying the number of additional shares available, the subscription price, and the subscription ratio.
  • Existing shareholders are then given a specific period to exercise their rights by purchasing the new shares.
  • This process is carefully orchestrated to ensure a smooth and transparent capital-raising process.

Deeper explanation

Digging a little deeper, rights issues are often triggered by specific financial scenarios, such as a need for substantial capital infusion due to a new project or a financial downturn. The decision to issue rights also hinges on the company’s growth plans and expansion strategies. Understanding these triggers is essential for investors looking to decode the significance of a rights issue.

The Intersection of CFDs and Rights Issues

Where CFDs and rights issues intersect specifically relates to stock trading. If you trade CFDs, you have access to several financial markets including shares and rights issues specifically impact shares. While share CFD traders don’t own the underlying asset or have any voting rights, rights issues will still impact the value of your share CFDs. You can also still participate in a rights issue as a share CFD trader.

Risks and Benefits of Rights Issues

There are a few key risks and benefits of rights issues to be aware of. Given their complex nature, we have highlighted both the risks and benefits of rights issues in simple terms below.


Participating in a rights issue can bring several advantages for existing shareholders. Beyond the potential for capital gains, it can strengthen your position within the company and enhance your shareholder value. Understanding these benefits is crucial when contemplating whether to exercise your rights.


However, like any financial manoeuvre, rights issues come with risks. As an existing shareholder, you may face dilution as the new shares are issued, impacting your ownership percentage. It’s imperative for you as an investor to weigh these potential downsides against the benefits before making a decision.

Key Components of CFD Trading

To understand the impact of rights issues on CFDs, it’s vital to know the key components of CFD trading, which we’ve highlighted below.

Leveraging Gains with CFDs

Contracts for difference (CFDs) are a leveraged product, which means you only need to deposit a small percentage of the full value of the trade to open a CFD position. Despite not paying the full value of the CFD trade, you will still earn the full value of the trade if you make a profit. The reverse is also true if you make a loss. As mentioned above, one of the great benefits of leveraged CFD trading is that you can speculate on the rising and falling prices of a variety of global financial markets such as shares, indices, commodities, currencies and treasuries, without having to own the underlying asset.

Risks and Benefits of CFD Trading

Trading CFDs offers several advantages, however, it’s essential to weigh these advantages against the associated risks. We’ve highlighted the key benefits and associated risks below.


  • Leverage and Margin: One of the key advantages of CFD trading is the ability to use leverage. You can amplify your market exposure with a relatively small initial investment, magnifying potential profits. However, it’s crucial to note that leverage also increases the risk of losses.
  • Diverse Asset Classes: Trading CFDs gives you access to an extensive array of asset classes. From shares of leading companies to commodities like gold and oil, you can easily diversify your portfolio. You can even trade complex derivatives such as ETFs or options, which opens CFD trading up to retail traders of all levels, from beginner to advanced.
  • Short-Selling Opportunities: Unlike traditional investments, CFDs allow you to profit from both rising and falling markets. Short-selling enables you to capitalise on price declines, providing profit opportunities in bearish trends while holding a short CFD position.


  • Market Volatility: The dynamic nature of financial markets introduces a level of risk in CFD trading. Rapid price fluctuations can lead to unexpected losses, emphasising the importance of risk management strategies.
  • Margin Calls: Trading on margin means borrowing funds to increase the size of a position. However, it also exposes you to the risk of margin calls, where additional funds are required to maintain any open positions you might have.
  • Lack of Ownership: Unlike traditional investing, CFD traders do not own the underlying assets. While this eliminates the need for storage or delivery of physical assets, it also means you might miss out on benefits like dividends and voting rights.

Regulatory Landscape for CFDs

Navigating the regulatory landscape is paramount in CFD trading, especially when rights issues are involved. The first important step is to select a reputable CFD broker. Ensuring your broker is regulated by a recognised authority provides a level of security for your funds and ensures fair trading practices. In the UK, the main regulatory body is the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). As a UK trader, some of the top FCA-regulated brokers we recommend include Pepperstone, IG Markets and CMC Markets.

The Impact of Rights Issues on Stock Markets

Rights issues can have a significant impact on the stock price and overall market sentiment. Understanding how the market reacts to such events is essential for investors aiming to make informed decisions.

How Rights Issues Affect Stock Prices

Rights issues can affect the share price by diluting its value which, in turn, affects trading volumes. Stock prices become diluted by the introduction of more shares which can cause a downward trend in the valuation of the shares.

Quite often, on the day of a rights issue announcement, there is increased trading activity (I.E. higher trading volume) on those shares as a rights issue often represents an increased interest in those shares.

As such, equipping yourself with accurate and timely information about rights issues can help you make crucial financial decisions and therefore impact your trading strategy going forward.

Rights Issue: Opportunities for CFD Traders

The great opportunity for CFD traders in the event of a rights issue is that you can still participate despite not owning the underlying shares. Therefore, you are taking on less risk but still enjoying the benefits of a rights issue. Given that share CFDs are a leveraged derivative, you also don’t have to put up the full value of the CFD trade to open a position. All of this adds up to the same advantages as a normal shareholder with much less downside.

A Case Study: Rights Issue and Market Response

To explain what a rights issue might look like and the associated market response, we’ve highlighted a relevant case study below.

Case Study: ABC Corporation Rights Issue

Background: ABC Corporation is a publicly traded company operating in the technology sector. Due to its expansion plans and the need for additional funds, the company’s board of directors decides to conduct a rights issue.

Key Players:

  1. ABC Corporation: The issuing company.
  2. Shareholders: Existing owners of ABC Corporation’s shares.
  3. Investment Banks/Underwriters: Financial institutions that facilitate the rights issue process.


Decision and Announcement:

  • ABC Corporation’s board assesses its capital requirements for expansion.
  • They decide to issue new shares to existing shareholders via a rights issue.
  • The company announces its decision to conduct a rights issue at a ratio of 5 new shares for every 10 existing shares at a discounted price of $15.

Information Circular:

  • ABC Corporation sends an information circular to its shareholders explaining the purpose of the rights issue, the number of new shares offered, the subscription ratio, the subscription price, and the timeline.

Subscription Period:

  • Shareholders are given 16 days to exercise their rights and subscribe to the new shares.
  • The subscription price is set at $15 (below the market price of $20) to incentivise participation.
  • As a result, you could buy 50 more shares for $750, a discount of $250.

Trading of Rights:

  • As a shareholder, you can choose to exercise your rights, sell your rights on the open market, or let them expire.
  • The rights are tradable, allowing you to sell your rights to others who want to increase their stake.

Funding and Allotment:

  • Shareholders who choose to exercise their rights provide funds to ABC Corporation.
  • Once the subscription period ends, ABC Corporation issues new shares to those who subscribed, based on the subscription ratio.


  • ABC Corporation now has the additional capital raised from the rights issue.
  • The ownership structure may change based on who subscribed to the new shares and who sold their rights.

Strategies for CFD Trading During a Rights Issue

When a company announces a rights issue, each shareholder is offered the right to purchase a pro-rata allocation of these new shares at a specific price within a certain period, usually between 16 and 30 days. With them, shareholders have the ‘right’ to do one of three things:

  1. Purchase additional shares
  2. Sell these rights to someone else
  3. Do nothing at all

It’s also important to acknowledge what your options are if you hold a short CFD position:

  1. Buy back the rights to close your short position
  2. Do nothing and don’t close out the position

As a CFD trader, despite not owning the underlying shares you can still participate in a rights issue with any of the above 3 options.

Key Factors to Consider Prior to a Rights Issue

Before you decide on the above options when a rights issue is announced, it’s important to properly educate yourself. We’ve highlighted three key factors to consider prior to a rights issue.

Research and Analysis: Before engaging in CFD trading during a rights issue, thorough research and analysis are imperative. Understand the company issuing rights, assess market sentiment, and analyse historical price trends.

Diversification for Risk Mitigation: Diversifying your CFD portfolio helps spread risk. Instead of focusing on a single asset, consider a mix of instruments to mitigate potential losses.

Setting Realistic Targets: Define clear profit and loss targets before entering a trade. Setting realistic expectations helps manage emotions and prevents impulsive decision-making.

Market Trends and CFDs: What Traders Should Know

It’s important to be aware of different market trends when CFD trading. Financial markets can rise or fall (I.E. an upward or downward trend), depending on many, varying factors. One way to analyse and forecast the trend a market may take is using either fundamental or technical analysis. Fundamental analysis is when you analyse a stock’s intrinsic value (I.E. it’s financial health), while technical analysis is using historical price-action to forecast the direction of that particular stock’s future price.

As mentioned above, when a rights issue is announced, the share price is diluted and there may be more trading activity, meaning more trading volume and more volatility due to the increased interest in that particular stock. This could in turn affect the overall market index that the stock is contained within (I.E. Apple share price volatility will affect the Nasdaq-100 index).

By being aware of a potential market trend that could form due to a rights issue, you can prepare yourself with an informed trading decision if you hold a CFD position in that underlying share.

Advanced CFD Strategies in Times of Rights Issues

Aside from the above strategies for holding a long or short CFD position, there are some advanced strategies in times of rights issues for more experienced traders. We’ve highlighted three key advanced CFD strategies below.

Guaranteed Stop Loss: If you hold a position with a guaranteed stop loss order (GSLO) at the close of business the day before the ex-dividend date, your broker will amend the position on your behalf – usually pre-market on the morning of the ex-date – so you automatically take up the rights issue or open offer. The stop, level and size of the trade will be amended to keep the monetary risk the same as before the rights issue. This process will usually take place if the issue/offer is in the money (I.E. the share price exceeds the issue/offer price) on the ex-date.

Non-guaranteed stop or limit: If you have a non-guaranteed stop or limit order in place, these will be amended according to the terms of the rights issue event to take on board the dilution of the price in the underlying stock.

Oversubscription: With some rights issues, it’s also possible to opt for an oversubscription, which means you can apply for more shares than you already have. In this event, you can elect to take up your full basic allocation and apply to purchase more. If you opt for an oversubscription, you must make sure that you fund the relevant CFD account by the deadline date to cover both the basic and oversubscription amounts. If you don’t have sufficient funds in your account to also cover the oversubscription amount, then only your basic entitlement will be taken up. Oversubscription might also be subject to scale-back, which means you may not receive the full number of shares you applied for.

Key Takeaways

  • Rights issues provide multiple opportunities to profit in CFD trading
  • Solid fundamental analysis and a trading strategy are essential
  • Make the most of increased market volatility following a rights issue, but don’t hold out too long


Can CFD traders ignore rights issues?

  • Yes, you can. Ignoring rights issues is one of the options you have when a company announces a corporate event such as a rights issue. However, this may lead to missed opportunities or unexpected portfolio impacts. It’s advisable to stay informed and consider participating in a CFD rights issue based on your circumstances.

How often do companies announce rights issues?

  • The frequency of rights issues varies among companies and industries. Monitoring market news and staying updated on individual stocks can provide insights into potential upcoming rights issues.

Are there specific industries more prone to rights issues?

  • Certain industries, such as finance and energy, may experience rights issues more frequently. However, it ultimately depends on the financial health and strategic decisions of individual companies.

What role do regulators play in CFD rights issues?

  • Regulators oversee the fairness and legality of rights issues. CFD traders must be aware of regulatory requirements and ensure compliance when participating in such financial maneuvers.

Is timing crucial in participating in CFD rights issues?

  • Timing is indeed crucial. CFD traders should carefully assess the market conditions and company announcements before deciding to participate in a rights issue.
About the author:

Justin Grossbard

Having traded since 1998, Justin is the CEO and Co-Founded CompareForexBrokers in 2004. Justin has published over 100 finance articles from Forbes, Kiplinger to Finance Magnates. He has a Masters and Commerce degree and has an active role in the fintech community. He has also published a book in 2023 on on investing and trading.

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