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NYSE CEO Says Takeover Will Be Determined in ‘Next Few Weeks’

The fate of NYSE Euronext’s merger with Deutsche Boerse AG will be determined in “the next few weeks” as European officials rule whether it will stifle competition, Chief Executive Officer Duncan Niederauer wrote.

“We have already produced a clear and articulate response to the commission‘s statement of objections,” Niederauer said in a transcript of a video message to employees filed with U.S. regulators today. “The next few weeks will determine the outcome of this process.”

The operator of the New York Stock Exchange and the Frankfurt-based exchange company told antitrust regulators they would impose a three-year ban on derivative-fee increases should the deal be approved, Deutsche Boerse said last month. The companies also proposed to the European Union a sale of NYSE’s Liffe single-stock equity derivatives business, two people familiar with the situation said.

The exchanges, which announced the deal in February, have been responding to the EU’s so-called statement of objections since October, as part of the approval process for the merger. The company would be the world’s largest exchange operator

The companies last month delayed the deadline for completing the merger until March 31 from the deal at the end of 2011. The value of the deal has fallen to $6.8 billion from $9.5 billion when it was announced.

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