U.S. News

Sweden's Government to Review OMX-Nasdaq Deal

By Reuters

Sweden's government will review a proposed $3.7 billion takeover of Nordic bourses owner OMX by Nasdaq over worries companies could be forced to operate under U.S. stock market rules, an official said on Wednesday.

"They (the government) will look at the risk that there will be an American 'spillover' in the regulations," Sara Lundgren, a spokeswoman for Financial Markets Minister Mats Odell said.

She declined to give further details.

The government has a 6.6% stake in OMX, but it is not clear if it could block the agreed deal. The government has parliamentary permission to sell its holding in OMX as part of Sweden's biggest-ever privatization campaign.

OMX has already said a takeover will not mean U.S. stock exchange rules apply to companies listed on its markets.

Earlier this month OMX chairman Urban Backstrom and Chief Executive Magnus Booker said the Nordic group had held talks with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and that the agency had confirmed that trading and listing on OMX bourses would not fall under SEC jurisdiction.

OMX owns and operates stock exchanges in Stockholm, Helsinki, Copenhagen, Reykjavik and the Baltic states.

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