As federal regulators continue tweaking new public accounting rules, opponents of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act will find more fuel for their argument in the news that Hong Kong passed over New York in 2006 to become the world's second most popular place for companies to issue new stock listings.London remained at the top of the list.

Analysts pointed to both the city’s proximity to mainland China's booming economy and the rise of regional markets thanks to technology, alongside the accounting rules, as having played a major role. The growth in issuance has been largely driven entirely by Chinese companies looking to enter international capital markets.

Hong Kong, with a solid financial system in place, handled a number of initial public offerings for several of China's biggest banks this year, including the $21.9 billion October offering by Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, the largest ever.

Just before the Christmas holiday, Hong Kong has raised approximately $39.57 billion in U.S. dollars -- about twice the country’s take  last year, according to Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. According to the World Federation of Exchange, London raised $48.92 billion in IPO equity, while the New York Stock Exchange reported a total of $33.61 billion through November.

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