D.Boerse, NYSE offer more remedies to clear merger

Tue Dec 13, 2011 10:33am EST
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By Andreas Kröner and Edward Taylor

PARIS/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Exchange operators NYSE Euronext NYX.N and Deutsche Boerse AG DB1Gne.DE offered more divestments in a bid to assuage European authorities' antitrust concerns over their proposed $9 billion merger.

Deutsche Boerse said in a statement on Tuesday the two companies had proposed selling more European single-equity derivatives assets than previously planned, and to offer rivals more extensive access to their clearing house for trading in innovative equity index and interest rate derivatives.

A person familiar with the matter told Reuters the companies were prepared to sell NYSE Euronext unit Liffe's single-stock equity derivatives business in Europe. A spokesman for Deutsche Boerse declined to say in which countries assets may be sold.

Deutsche Boerse's takeover of NYSE Euronext, first announced amid a rush of industry merger plans in February, would create the world's largest exchange operator.

But the European Commission has concerns that new combined entity would have too tight a grip on exchange-based derivatives trading in Europe.

In November, Deutsche Boerse and NYSE had already proposed selling overlapping parts of their single-stock equity derivatives businesses in key markets, and to open up Deutsche Boerse's Eurex derivatives clearing house to outsiders for certain products.

The companies also said on Tuesday they would license the Eurex trading system to a third party interested in launching interest rate derivatives.

FACING SCRUTINY   Continued...