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London Stock Exchange Suffers Indigestion From Refinitiv Deal - The Wall Street Journal

London Stock Exchange Group PLC’s $15 billion acquisition of Refinitiv Holdings Ltd. is proving more difficult to integrate than expected, and shareholders of Europe’s biggest exchange operator by market value are paying an early price.

LSEG’s stock is down 15% since closing the deal at the end of January. By comparison its global peers have posted stock performances ranging from a gain of a little more than 1% for Asia’s Hong Kong Exchanges Clearing Ltd. and Nasdaq Inc.’s 34% gain over the same period, according to FactSet.

Investors sent LSEG’s stock soaring after the deal announcement almost two years ago, betting it would transform the U.K.-based company into a major financial data provider that could challenge market leader Bloomberg LP and other industry heavyweights for customers in banking, asset management and other sectors.

That still might happen. But six months after the deal’s closing, LSEG faces higher-than-expected costs to integrate the transformational acquisition, underscoring the challenges it needs to overcome for the bet to pay off.

Capital Group Cos. is among LSEG investors that have cut their positions. The Los Angeles-based fund giant owned 4.98% as of June 15, down from 6.81% as of March 5, according to regulatory filings and the LSEG annual report. A Capital Group spokesperson declined to comment.