Japan Exchange Group, TOCOM to merge this year – sources

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FILE PHOTO: A logo of Japan Exchange Group Inc. is seen next to a woman, dressed in ceremonial kimono, before the New Year opening ceremony at the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE), held to wish for the success of Japan’s stock market, in Tokyo, Japan, January 4, 2016. REUTERS/Yuya Shino/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan Exchange Group Inc (JPX), owner of Tokyo Stock Exchange, and the Tokyo Commodity Exchange Inc have decided to merge, two sources with direct knowledge of the talks said, as Japan pushes to create an all-in-one bourse.

JPX will make a tender offer to buy all of the smaller bourse’s shares as early as the middle of this year, the people told Reuters on Friday, declining to be identified because the discussions are not public.

JPX and the commodity exchange, known as TOCOM, signed a non-disclosure agreement in October to start talks over possible integration and have said they aim to reach a basic agreement some time next month.

In response to similar media reports on Friday, JPX said in a statement an agreement had not been reached yet.

A combined JPX and TOCOM would create an integrated bourse that offers trades in stocks, derivatives and commodities futures.

JPX also owns Osaka Exchange Inc, which runs derivatives markets such as index futures and JGB futures. TOCOM lists products such as precious metals, oil and rubber.

The government has been pushing for the creation of an integrated exchange, a move it sees helping Japan to become more competitive among global financial hubs.

Reporting by Takahiko Wada; Writing by Chang-Ran Kim; Editing by Stephen Coates

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