Deutsche Börse: The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) today approved the merger of Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext. This represents an important regulatory milestone for the merger. The DOJ’s clearance was contingent upon the International Securities Exchange (ISE) agreeing to sell its 31.5 percent stake in Direct Edge, a U.S. stock exchange. Until completing the divestiture, ISE’s ownership in Direct Edge will be held passively.
ISE is 100 percent owned by Eurex, which is the derivatives exchange of Deutsche Börse. ISE partnered with Direct Edge in late 2008 when the ISE equity market operations (known as ISE Stock Exchange) became a wholly owned subsidiary of Direct Edge. In return, ISE gained a minority stake in Direct Edge.
The merger of Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext is subject to further closing conditions. The approval by the EU Commission is still outstanding. The EU Commission has announced to make a final decision by no later than February 9, 2012. Further approvals by the relevant national stock exchange supervisory authorities are also outstanding.