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Warsaw Stock Exchange

Analysis: Centuries-old Vienna bourse seeks lifeline in Warsaw

The venerable Vienna Stock Exchange swallowed centuries of national pride this month to enter into talks that could lead to a merger with its upstart rival in Warsaw.Vienna, the central capital market of the Habsburg Empire in the eighteenth century and later gateway to central and eastern Europe after the fall of the Iron Curtain, has been usurped by the Warsaw exchange , with its friendly regulation and privatisations, as the main arena for investing in the region.Warsaw passed Vienna in terms of share of trading in central and eastern Europe (CEE) in 2008. The capitalisation of listed companies of 684 billion zlotys ($215 billion) on the main WIG20 market now dwarfs Vienna's 80 billion euros ($104 billion).But Warsaw itself, part-owned by the government, currently faces a slowing rate of share offerings, while pension reforms could cause an exit of pension-fund assets from the stock exchange - making a merger in its interests too.A combination could make investors take notice in an ...

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