Q and A: Royal Mail share sale: what’s next for the postal service?

Q What’s happening today? I thought Royal Mail was already listed.

A Shares were allocated to investors last Friday and conditional trading began the same day. But the formal float process is only completed today, meaning buyers actually come into possession of shares listed on the stock market.

Q Does this mean I can finally sell my allocation?

A Anyone who bought shares through the government’s official website will only be able to sell their shares from today. And today is also the first time that anyone with an ISA will be able to buy additional shares within their tax-free wrapper.

Q What about the threat of industrial action?

A The Communication and Workers Union will unveil the results of an anti-privatisation strike ballot this Wednesday, which is expected to result in a national walkout over pay and conditions. Although it’s too late to reverse the listing process disruption in the run-up to Christmas could hit the share price.

Q How much have investors made from the sale?

A The share price has shot up by 40 per cent but initial individual allocations of just £750 per person mean gains are limited. Institutions with large allocations will be celebrating.

Q When does the company join the FTSE 100?

A With a market valuation of £4.7bn Royal Mail sits comfortably within the list of Britain’s top 100 companies. But it will have to wait until 11 December to join the index.