Baikal gains regulatory approval

Baikal gains regulatory approval

London Stock Exchange Group today announces that Baikal, its pan-European MTF dark pool and liquidity aggregation service, has received regulatory approval from the Financial Services Authority.

Baikal’s phased roll-out will begin this weekwith the launch of the Smart Order Routing (SOR) capability. This will be followed by the order book and further functionality later in the year.

Xavier Rolet, Chief Executive of London Stock Exchange Group, said:

“I am delighted Baikal has received regulatory approval from the FSA. In line with our ambitious launch timetable, we have delivered the first part of Baikal’s solution for aggregating liquidity and solving the challenges of market fragmentation. We look forward to building on this important milestone with the launch of the non-display order book and further liquidity aggregation services later in the year.”

The launch of Baikal’s SOR service will help customers overcome fragmentation by providing best execution across 17 major European equity trading venues in 14 countries via one entry point, one connection and one clearing arrangement.

At launch Baikal’s SOR service will route business in 6,500 equities and

ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds). OTC settlement will be provided by BNP Paribas Securities Services, saving customers the need for multiple clearing house memberships and associated margin calls.

Baikal has been authorised by the Financial Services Authority as an investment firm and has permission to operate an MTF. Baikal continues to refine and develop its market model to maximise value to participants and satisfy the requirements of the MiFID pre-trade transparency regime that are applicable to non-display MTFs.

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Notes to editors:

About London Stock Exchange Group:

London Stock Exchange Group is Europe's leading diversified exchange business. It operates Europe's largest and most liquid equity market with over 500 member firms, holds the number one position in trading ETFs and securitised derivatives, and through its interest in MTS, is the leading platform for the trading of fixed income products.

The London Stock Exchange itself is the world's most international exchange with nearly 700 overseas companies from over 70 countries on its markets. It has consolidated this position in the last three calendar years, having attracted 218 international companies which raised over £32 billion between them. These figures include international companies on AIM, the London Stock Exchange's growth market, which has grown to become the world's most successful market for small and medium sized enterprises with over 1500 companies at the end of 2008.

Following its merger with Borsa Italiana in 2007, London Stock Exchange Group also now offers post-trade services such as netting, clearing and settlement on an efficient and competitive basis, and a comprehensive range of European bond trading services through MTS.