Deutsche Börse slaps down CME merger talks

Michael Bow
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EXCHANGE rivals CME Group and Deutsche Börse saw a spike in trading yesterday after it emerged the two sides had met for talks about a possible merger.

German exchange operator Deutsche Börse last night issued a statement denying it was in merger talks, shooting down rumours a deal could be on the cards after the two met to discuss a possible tie-up last month.

“Deutsche Börse AG is not in merger negotiations with CME Group,” Deutsche Börse said.

“As repeatedly communicated, Deutsche Börse group’s primary strategic focus is on organic growth, mainly by expanding its business into growth regions in Asia, extending its services for unsecured and unregulated markets, and expanding its combined market data and IT business.” US operator CME Group declined to comment.

Deutsche Börse shares jumped as much as ten per cent during trading in Frankfurt yesterday but closed up 5.6 per cent on the previous day’s price. CME Group, the world’s largest futures market exchange, jumped in early trading but fell back to yesterday’s close price.

Last year, European competition authorities blocked a potential tie-up between Deutsche and the NYSE Euronext.

NYSE Euronext is now being taken over by InternationalExchange in a $8.2bn (£5.4bn) deal.

Two meetings were held between CME and Deutsche Börse, one in December and the other last month.

The meetings, first reported by Bloomberg yesterday, were at CME’s request, it is understood.