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NYSE nears merger with Euronext

LONDON -- Euronext and the New York Stock Exchange are set to close a merger that will create the world's first trans-Atlantic bourse, a British newspaper reported yesterday.

The all-stock merger will create the biggest trading platform in the world, valued at $20 billion, the Sunday Times reported.

The newspaper said executives from both companies spent the weekend thrashing out final details of the deal, which is likely to be put to the Euronext board today, ahead of group's annual meeting in Amsterdam tomorrow.

Both Euronext-- which operates stock exchanges in Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, and Lisbon-- and the NYSE have been among the interested parties looking to do a deal with the coveted London Stock Exchange PLC. But they have decided the best option would be to press ahead with their own merger, the report said.

The Nasdaq Stock Market Inc.'s recent acquisition of more than a quarter of the LSE prompted Euronext to call off its long-running interest in the British exchange and increased pressure on NYSE to find a European partner.

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