Nasdaq reorganises market services to boost global competitiveness

NEW YORK (REUTERS) - Nasdaq OMX Group said on Monday it is reorganising its market services business to better compete globally in fixed income, currencies, derivatives and other asset classes.

Hans-Ole Jochumsen, the exchange operator's top executive in Europe, will take on an expanded role that includes oversight of transactions, clearing and settlement services for the United States and Europe.

Mr Jochumsen will be at the helm of Nasdaq's new Global Market Services unit, aimed at driving growth across the New York-based company's fixed income, currencies and commodities businesses, as well as equities-based cash and derivatives.

"The focus will be on how we can align our different businesses and make them more global where that makes sense," Mr Jochumsen said in an interview.

Nasdaq has been expanding its offerings in fixed income and derivatives, having closed its US$750 million (S$954 million) purchase of electronic Treasuries-trading platform eSpeed last July, and launched NLX, a London-based fixed-income futures trading platform, late last May.

Around two-thirds of Nasdaq's trading revenue comes from derivatives and fixed income.

The company also operates a clearinghouse in Europe that last week was the first of its kind to be authorised to clear over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives under new European reforms.

Regulators around the world have been taking steps to push derivatives, which include commodities and other financial instruments such as swaps, onto exchanges and into clearing to improve transparency and lower risk.

Mr Jochumsen said mandatory clearing obligations for certain OTC products would likely be in place in Europe in the next nine to 15 months, a development that represents a big opportunity for Nasdaq.

Deutsche Boerse's Eurex is Europe's largest derivatives exchange, followed by IntercontinentalExchange Group's NYSE Liffe.

In his new role, Mr Jochumsen, who previously headed Nordic transaction services and global commodities for Nasdaq, will take over responsibility for execution services at the exchange, No. 3 in the United States by volume.

That job had been held by Eric Noll, who left Nasdaq in November to become chief executive of New York-based brokerage ConvergEx. Mr Noll was seen as Nasdaq's top internal candidate to replace CEO Robert Greifeld.

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