S&P Global Offices In NYC

The S&P Global logo is displayed on its offices in the financial district in New York City, U.S., December 13, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

US Approves $39B Maritime Media And Data Deal

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November 16, 2021

By David McLaughlin (Bloomberg) S&P Global (NYSE: SPGI) won U.S. antitrust approval to buy IHS Markit (NYSE: INFO) – owners of The Journal Of Commerce – to create a financial data giant spanning everything from bond ratings and commodities prices to tracking the trade flows across the world’s oceans.

The Justice Department cleared the $39 billion deal Friday after requiring the companies to sell some businesses to ease competition concerns over the tie-up, according to a settlement filed in federal court in Washington.

The deal gives S&P, one of the most famous names in financial markets and known for bond ratings and index businesses, a stronger foothold in markets for financial derivatives, including credit default swaps and collateralized loan obligations. IHS’s maritime products, which include ship tracking, port data, and information on trade flows, could complement S&P Global Platts, the main provider of benchmark prices for key raw materials, including oil and refined products.

The acquisition, announced last year, underscored the central role of data in financial markets and the ever-growing demand from investors for information that gives them an edge in increasingly fast and computerized markets. Bloomberg LP, the parent of Bloomberg News, competes with IHS and S&P in providing financial analytics and information.

U.S. approval comes after European Union competition regulators granted conditional approval to the deal in October. The Justice Department required the sale of IHS’s Oil Price Information Services and Coal, Metals and Mining, according to court papers. The companies previously agreed to sell those businesses to News Corp.

By David McLaughlin © 2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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