Bloomberg News

EU Antitrust Chief Says He Will Block Deals ‘Whenever Necessary’

February 02, 2012

Feb. 2 (Bloomberg) -- The day after blocking the merger of NYSE Euronext and Deutsche Boerse AG, the European Union’s antitrust chief vowed to veto other deals that hamper competition.

The EU will continue to block deals “whenever necessary,” Joaquin Almunia said in prepared remarks for a speech in Brussels today.

The deal to create the world’s largest exchange would have created a “near-monopoly” that could have increased trading fees and prevented investors switching from exchange-traded to over- the-counter derivatives, Almunia said.

Offers from the companies to soothe EU antitrust concerns were “too limited,” he said. “I rarely have to propose the prohibition of a merger,” said Almunia. “This means that I do not do so lightly; but I have done and will continue to do so whenever necessary.”

--Editor: Peter Chapman

To contact the reporter on this story: Aoife White in Brussels at awhite62@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net.


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