Thain Revisits NYSE's Global Ambitions

John Thain, CEO of the NYSE Group, told CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo on “Squawk on the Street” that he expects to complete the merger with Euronext by the end of March or early April.

“I’m very optimistic,” Thain said.

Thain said the NYSE next will look to expand into Asia, and called Tokyo, India and China the “three areas of focus.”

“We want to build a global exchange,” he said. “”I’m hopeful that we can work something out soon with Tokyo.”

He said the NYSE continues to attract international companies, but noted that the “competitive position of the United States is an issue.”

“I think we have to do something about the regulatory environment and litigation environment in the United States,” Thain told CNBC.

Thain became CEO of NYSE Group in March 2006. He served as CEO of the New York Stock Exchange since joining the exchange in January 2004. He succeeded Dick Grasso.

Before joining the New York Stock Exchange, Thain served as president and chief operating officer of Goldman Sachs Group.