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PAVE Shuts as Spanish Trading System Blames ‘Harsh’ Environment

Plataforma Alternativa de Valores Espanoles, or PAVE, which sought to create an alternative trading system in Iberian markets, said it’s temporarily halting operations due to the difficult financial environment in Europe.

PAVE, based in Barcelona with planned operations in Madrid and London, in August 2010 announced its intention to compete with Bolsas y Mercados Espanoles SA, operator of the biggest securities exchange on the Iberian peninsula. The new Spanish system, led by Javier Tordable, had said it would draw on “private capital” and initially planned to start trading securities in the first quarter of 2011.

Multilateral trading facilities such as Chi-X Europe Ltd. and Bats Europe emerged after new rules in 2007 opened the door to competition with traditional exchanges such as BME, Deutsche Boerse AG, London Stock Exchange Group Plc and NYSE Euronext. While Chi-X Europe and Bats Europe took business away from exchanges, others such as Nasdaq OMX Group Inc.’s Neuro unit closed after failing to gain market share. Bats Europe eventually bought Chi-X Europe.

“The very challenging market and harsh financial environment in Europe, especially in Spain, have highlighted the need for greater patience, resources and a broader, more decisive support from both international and domestic partners,” PAVE said in an e-mailed statement today.

“With the Spanish banks and brokers hit particularly hard under the current economic conditions, this needed support is currently both difficult and unrealistic to achieve.”

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