Barnier lifeline for NYSE deal

EUROPEAN commissioner Michel Barnier offered some hope that Deutsche Boerse’s merger with NYSE Euronext will be given the go-ahead by competition regulators.

Barnier placed a “waiting reserve” on the issue at a Commission meeting yesterday, meaning he could alter any recommendation by the EU antitrust authorities on the $17bn tie-in.

However, sources familiar with the matter said Barnier would not object if the EU does block the deal.

The college of commissioners will vote on the merger on 1 February.