(Recasts, adds details on operating expenses, recent deals)
Nov 9 (Reuters) - TMX Group Ltd, Canada's biggest stock exchange operator, reported a better-than-expected third-quarter profit on Thursday, as its cost-cutting drive helped lower operating expenses.
Net income attributable to the group's shareholders for the quarter ended Sept. 30 rose to C$51.9 million, or 94 Canadian cents per share, from C$39.2 million or 72 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding items, TMX, which owns the Toronto Stock Exchange, posted a profit of C$1.06 per share, compared with the C$1.04 per share analysts had expected on average, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue fell 7.9 percent to C$166.1 million because of lower trading in equities and derivatives.
Operating expenses fell 11 percent to C$92.5 million, helped by recent efforts to streamline the company, Chief Financial Officer John McKenzie said in a statement.
The company said last month it would buy Trayport, a London-based energy trading software firm, from Intercontinental Exchange Inc in a deal worth C$931 million.
As part of the deal for more global exposure and recurring revenue, TMX agreed to sell to ICE its Natural Gas Exchange Inc (NGX) and Shorcan Energy Brokers Inc, plus C$592 million in cash.
(Reporting by Karan Nagarkatti in Bengaluru; Editing by Chris Reese and Peter Cooney)