Gas Week

EWN Publishing

Gulf states rivals acquire almost half of London Stock Exchange; US to acquire OMX

Posted by gasweek on 28 September, 2007

Alignments between the world’s stock exchanges had changed at a dizzying pace in a single day, according to Norma Cohen and Robert Anderson reported The Australian (22/9/2007, p. 40). LSE and OMX both targets: Two rival Gulf states acquired almost half of the London Stock Exchange. At the same time, Borse Dubai said it would drop its bid for OMX, the Nordic exchange oper­ator, leaving the way open for Nasdaq of the US to proceed with an acquisition of the Stockholm-based group. The London Stock Exchange — at least for the time being — appeared to have a future as an independent organisation, but if the chief executives of OMX and Nasdaq are to be taken seriously, their deal heralded an era of competition between exchanges unprecedented in Europe.

Fierce competition in Europe and the Gulf: By the end of trading yester­day, almost 50 per cent of the LSE’s shares had fallen into the hands of state-owned entities based in the Gulf region, reported Cohen and Anderson. Borse Dubai agreed to buy most of Nasdaq’s stake in the LSE — a total of 28.8 per cent — at £14.40 a share. Qatar, a jilted suitor that had believed it was close to securing Nasdaq’s stake in the exchange, fought back by buying out two hedge fund stakes, representing about 20 per cent of the stock. The moves, alongside a Qatar purchase of 10 per cent of OMX, suggested competition for the role of the Gulf region’s dominant financial centre may be as fierce as the one to become Europe’s leading exchange.

The Australian, 22/9/2007, p. 40

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