City players view LSE as Nasdaq merger target

MARKET participants have called on the London Stock Exchange to consider a tie-up with Nasdaq, the US bourse, after its failed bid for Canadian group TMX made it vulnerable as a takeover target.

Speculation has been rife in the City that Nasdaq could table a bid for the LSE, given the lack of a partner for both bourses in the midst of frenzied exchange takeover activity worldwide.

Nasdaq boss Bob Greifeld is said to be under pressure to act, as biggest rival NYSE Euronext is in the throes of creating a transatlantic super-exchange with Deutsche Boerse.

LSE boss Xavier Rolet (pictured) is said to have not yet spoken with the Nasdaq chief since the failed TMX merger.

Several City players, from traders to analysts, have said they view theā€ˆLSE as a natural target for Nasdaq in the current climate.

“The LSE needs to do something, because as the other exchanges get bigger they get smaller, which can only lead to them being swallowed up,” said a senior trader at an international broker in London.