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Amex members approve acquisition by NYSE Euronext

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Members of the Amex Membership Corporation have approved the acquisition of the American Stock Exchange by NYSE Euronext, although finalisation of the deal still awaits approval of rule ch

Members of the Amex Membership Corporation have approved the acquisition of the American Stock Exchange by NYSE Euronext, although finalisation of the deal still awaits approval of rule changes related to the transaction by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Preliminary results indicate that the Amex members voted by 695 to 7 in favour of the transaction, with the number approving the deal representing some 84 per cent of the membership eligible to vote. The deal creates by far the largest listing and trading platform for exchange-traded funds in the US.

‘On behalf of all my colleagues at NYSE Euronext, I want to thank the AMC membership for approving this historic combination,’ says NYSE Euronext chief executive Duncan L. Niederauer. ‘We look forward to closing the transaction and to bringing our businesses together for the benefit of our customers and shareholders.’

Amex chairman and chief executive Neal Wolkoff adds: ‘We are pleased that the AMC membership strongly supports this transaction. The approval by seat owners is an important step to complete this compelling and strategic business combination.’

Under the terms of the agreement, NYSE Euronext will pay USD260m in common stock for the Amex, whose members will be entitled to receive additional shares of NYSE Euronext stock depending on the net proceeds from the expected sale of the American Stock Exchange’s headquarters in lower Manhattan.

Lehman Brothers is acting as financial advisor and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as legal advisor to NYSE Euronext, while the Amex is represented by Morgan Stanley as financial advisor and Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy and Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison as legal advisors.

The American Stock Exchange has been the pioneer of the ETF, responsible for bringing the first US product to market in 1993, and currently lists 406 ETFs to date.

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