Exclusive NYSE-Owner ICE Mulls Rival Bid for London Stock Exchange

U.S-based Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) is considering a counter offer for the London Stock Exchange in a bid to thwart a merger between Germany’s Deutsche Börse and the LSE. Shares of LSE jumped more than 7 percent to 28.79 pounds, or $40.13, after ICE, owner of the New York Stock Exchange, confirmed it was considering a bid. Deutsche Börse shares gave up half of their gains as news of the rival bid broke on Tuesday morning, trading 1.4 percent higher at €76.96, or $86.60, down from an intraday high of €77.90, according to Bloomberg data. Last week, Deutsche Börse and LSE announced plans to merge their operations, which would make them the world’s number 2 or 3 trading platform. Frankfurt-based Deutsche Börse already operates the bourse in Frankfurt, the derivatives market Eurex and clearing house Eurex Clearing. ICE, or Intercontinental Stock Exchange, based in Atlanta, on Tuesday said it “is considering making an offer for London Stock Exchange Group,” confirming an initial report by the news agency Bloomberg. The U.S. exchange operator said no decision had been made on whether to go ahead with a bid, and it had not yet approached LSE’s management board. Deutsche Börse and LSE were valued at around €27 billion, or $29 billion, based on last week’s market prices. ICE had a value of €26.6 billion, while the biggest, the Chicago-based CME Group was worth €28.3 billion.   Picture Source: Bloomberg