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UK Watchdog Says S&P Global, IHS Markit Deal May Harm Competition — Update

By Ian Walker

 

The U.K. Competition and Markets Authority said Tuesday that S&P Global Inc.'s planned $44 billion acquisition of IHS Markit Ltd. could harm competition within its markets and that it is considering whether to accept undertakings from the companies to address this.

The watchdog said it is concerned that the merger could lead to limited competition in a number of commodities markets. Specifically it said the companies have significant combined presence in price assessments of biofuels, coal, oil, and petrochemicals in the U.K.

The parties have until Oct. 26 to offer a solution that the CMA may accept, otherwise the deal will be referred for a further review.

S&P Global and IHS said Tuesday that they have discussed a number of divestiture options which they believe should satisfy the U.K. regulator's concerns, and which they will now formally submit to the CMA.

They have already agreed to sell IHS Markit's Oil Price Information Services; Coal, Metals and Mining; and PetroChem Wire businesses to News Corp, the owner of Dow Jones, subject to the relevant regulatory approvals.

The companies have also discussed with the CMA the possible sale of IHS Markit's base chemicals business to address any remaining concerns.

"The companies consider the proposed remedies sufficient to address the CMA's competition concerns and obtain clearance for their transaction in Phase 1," they said.

S&P Global in November last year agreed to acquire IHS Markit, in a deal that would combine two of the largest providers of data to Wall Street.

 

Write to Ian Walker at ian.walker@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 19, 2021 08:25 ET (12:25 GMT)

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