Nasdaq and ICE counterbid for NYSE

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Nasdaq and ICE counterbid for NYSE

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A bidding war is underway for NYSE Euronext. Nasdaq and the internet-based marketplace firm IntercontinentalExchange have launched a rival bid to that of Germany’s Deutsche Boerse.

They are offering cash and shares to the value of 11.3 billion dollars (8.1 billion euros). That is 19 percent more than the German bid.

NYSE Euronext and Nasdaq together would trade the stocks of more than 6,000 companies while Deutsche Boerse and NYSE Euronext combined would be the world’s largest stock exchange operator.

The new bid could also be more politically acceptable the idea of a non-American company taking over the emblematic New York Stock Exchange had stirred some opposition from US politicians.

The increasingly competitive and global exchange business is in the midst of a wave of consolidation.

The new offer could raise new competition questions as it would combine the two largest US stock exchanges.

Already, the Deutsche Boerse bid was seen as likely to attract intense regulatory scrutiny as the merged company would dominate European exchange-traded derivatives.

NYSE Euronext said its board would “carefully review” the new offer and urged shareholders not to take any action pending its review.