Royal Mail: What happens next?

Brokers struggled to deal with demand as individual investors raced to place their orders for shares in the biggest privatisation for a generation. Institutions had until 5pm to place their orders.

Ministers and bankers begin discussing how the Royal Mail shares will be allocated. Investors are highly unlikely to receive the full amount of shares that they applied for but ministers are keen to ensure all retail investors receive something. The government is expected to confirm that it will sell the maximum 60 per cent allocation.

Investors find out how many shares they have been allocated, the sale price is confirmed and shares enter the “conditional trading” phase. This allows institutions to trade shares between themselves and find the true market price – which is expected to be substantially higher than the sale price.

Unconditional trading begins and all investors can sell their shares, with many individuals expected to cash in.

Royal Mail becomes eligible for inclusion in the FTSE 100, which would require tracker funds to buy shares in the company.