CME's not done with GFI yet

March 20, 2015 01:55 PM

Financial services research firm KBW noted in its Exchanges Volume Weekly report that market volatility ticked up slightly and futures volume grew by 19% over the previous week during a busy week for news.

The report notes that capital raising was strong, with two IPOs and 23 follow-on offerings resulting in a combined $5.4 billion raised over the course of the week. 

Events in the trading world likely also contributed to the rise in both volume and volatility. This week was big for new company leadership, merger and acquisition announcements and fund composition changes.

Most notably, the battle over GFI Group wages on, even after the company voluntarily delisted from the New York Stock Exchange.

In mid-2014, CME bid to acquire GFI, but after a higher counter offer from BGC Partners and proxy advisory service recommendations against CME acquisition, shareholders voted against the deal. BGC won out in the end despite GFI hesitations, and shareholders were able to tender their shares into an all-cash offer in late February.

CME isn’t giving up yet, though. KBW notes that Bloomberg reported that CME and BGC are in talks to buy GFI’s technology assets—what CME would have gotten out of the deal to begin with. These assets would help CME expand globally and broaden their corporate reach.

“We aren’t surprised by this,” the KBW report states, “or by the reported price of over $600 million, which is in line with what CME was going to pay for these assets directly from GFI.”

Other acquisitions are happening, too.

ITG announced a new share repurchase amount and declared that they are open to adding a new seat on its board. Activist Philly Financial has nominated three directors.

According to Bloomberg, ITG may also be acquiring privately held Convergex, a competitor broker. Priced at $200 million, the acquisition helped drive the stock up 15% on March 13 according to KBW.

The Intercontinental Exchange also plans to boost its contribution to default funds, including ICE Clear Europe’s “default waterfall,” KBW reports.

The full report, including charts and tables, can be found here.  

About the Author

Jaime Toplin is the editorial and web intern at Futures Magazine. She also contributes content to Hard Assets and the Alpha Pages. Jaime is a senior at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, studying magazine and online journalism as well as legal studies. She is the VP of Public Relations for her student government and works for a Medill professor who researches digital media.