European Stocks to Watch: NYSE Euronext

The newly merged transatlantic exchange operator NYSE Euronext made its debut in Paris when it started trading as a combined company on Wednesday.

Shares of the group increased to 3.31% at 94 euros after the market open.

Chief Executive John Thain and the group’s new deputy chief, Jean-Francois Theodore, attended the start of trading at the old Paris bourse.

Both men are planning to make it to New York in time for the NYSE closing bell later in the day.

The NYSE and Euronext merger completion today ends a nearly year-long process in the formation of the world’s largest exchange group, with bases in Europe and the U.S.

Also active in European trading:

SSL International (up 6.29%) Shares of SSL International rose on talk that a private equity bid of 465 pence will be announced today, traders told Dow Jones Newswires. The shares are currently trading at 437.5 pence.

Home Retail Group (up 2.67%) Citigroup raised its target of Home Retail Group from ‘hold’ to ‘buy’.

Scor (up 2.19%) The French re-insurer’s shares increased on better than expected 2006 forecast-beating results and its determination to pursue its bid for Swiss rival Convertium.

Biffa (down 5.84%) The U.K. waste management company issued a full-year profit warning blaming weakness in the commercial and industrial collection businesses.

Yara International (down 3.70%) Shares of the Nordic group were down after Morgan Stanley cut it from ‘equalweight’ to ‘underweight’.