Bloomberg Supports Merger Deal Between NYSE, Germans

Former CEO mayor endorses idea of combining exchanges

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday he thinks the propsed merger of the iconic New York Stock Exchange with Frankfurt's Deutsche Boerse would be "the right thing for New York City."

His comments come a day after the parent companies of the New York Stock Exchange and Deutsche Boerse said they were in "advanced talks" to combine operations -- a deal that would create the world's largest financial exchange.

Bloomberg, a billionaire who started his career on Wall Street, said he thinks the move would make American companies more competitive world-wide.

"I think it's very good for New York to have two of the strongest exchanges together. It's going to give us access to Europe, and the Europeans access to the States in a way that our competitors, like London, will not have," Bloomberg said at a press conference in New York.

The combined company would draw its leadership from both New York and Frankfurt and be incorporated in the Netherlands.  Boerse shareholders would own as much as 60 percent of the new company.  Any possible deal would face scrutiny from regulators and European antitrust officials. 

According to the New York Times, the New York Stock Exchange, a 218-year-old symbol of American capitalism, is facing pressure from "electronic upstarts" that are taking business away.

Analysts are debating the potential effect on corporations and invdidual investors, but some observers fear that such a merger could damage the vitality of the financial industry in New York and the role of exchange’s professionals on the famed NYSE trading floor.

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