NYSE owner sells to rival firm

The company that owns the New York Stock Exchange is being sold to rival American firm Intercontinental Exchange for more than $US8 billion.

Atlanta-based ICE is offering cash and shares for NYSE Euronext, although the deal will need regulatory approval, the BBC reports.

ICE said that it planned to float off the Euronext part of the business, which runs the main stock exchanges in Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam and Lisbon.

If the deal gets the backing of regulators, the combined company would become the world's third-largest exchange group.

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