The departure of the head of the German exchange Deutsche Börse has led to renewed speculation about mergers between European stock markets. The British based hedge fund, TCI, which is the biggest shareholder in the Frankfurt exchange has now said it prefers a merger with financial markets operator Euronext, which includes Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam and Lisbon.
It believes that would be a better fit than the previously proposed link up with the London Stock Exchange. Deutsche Börse’s chief executive Werner Seifert was forced to resign by TCI
and other shareholders. They said he wanted to pay too much for the LSE
Officially Euronext has made no comment on the idea that it might merge with the German exchange. But according to one report, a source there has said Euronext remains focused on London.
The UK Competition Commission last week published a statement of issues it will examine as part of its inquiry into the implications of the possible acquisition of LSE
by Euronext or Deutsche Börse. Euronext has submitted outline plans for potentially acquiring LSE
, without so far setting a price.Analysts said that a merger between the Frankfurt exchange and Euronext would make sense, for that same reason that drove the controversial attempt to buy the LSE
late last year.
They pointed out that Deutsche Börse’s technical infrastructure is set up for much larger trading volumes and so it needs to merge with another firm.