Hong Kong Stock Market Retracts Offer to Buy London Exchange

By: Keith Bradsher

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Hong Kong’s stock exchange will no longer proceed with its nearly $37 billion offer to buy its London competitor, it announced on Tuesday morning, in a setback for the exchange’s long-running effort to build a closer connection to European markets.

The surprise bid was initially presented four weeks ago as a way for the pre-eminent stock markets of Asia and Europe to join forces to provide simpler trading and help bring China, the world’s second-largest economy, more directly into global financial markets. The Hong Kong market said that if the two exchanges combined, they could offer continuous trading for 18 hours a day.

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