NYSE Euronext, a global exchange group, has agreed in principle to sell a stake in NYSE Amex Options, one of its two US options exchanges, to a group of market makers and banks in a bid to enhance liquidity on the platform.
Subject to regulatory approval, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays Capital, Citadel Securities, Citi, Goldman Sachs, TD AMERITRADE and UBS will take8=
a “significant” joint equity stake in the platform.
NYSE Euronext will remain the majority shareholder and will continue to manage the day-to-day operations of NYSE Amex Options. The platform will operate under the supervision of a separate board of directors and a dedicated chief executive officer.
The exchange expects to complete the deal by the end of 2009. As well as boosting trading on the platform, NYSE Euronext expects the acquisition to allow it to make additional services available on NYSE Amex Options, including the facilitation of open-outcry orders.
“Market participants will benefit from tighter spreads, deeper liquidity, superior technology and the distinct market model of NYSE Amex Options,” said Edward Boyle, senior vice president, US options, NYSE Euronext, in a statement. “We plan to continue to enhance technology and quoting speed, build upon existing service offerings and introduce new products and order types to generate future order flow.”
“This partnership will further align our business interests with those of our customers, and makes NYSE Amex options an even more compelling trading venue within an increasingly competitive marketplace,” added Duncan Niederauer, CEO, NYSE Euronext.
NYSE Euronext acquired NYSE Amex Options through its purchase of the American Stock Exchange (Amex) in 2008. The group also operates the NYSE Arca Options platform.