The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) is inviting the public to give feedback on the review of the proposed acquisition of Refinitiv Holdings Limited by the London Stock Exchange Group from September 16 to October 7.

The proposed acquisition was announced in August 2019.

On April 6, the CCCS accepted an application from both parties on whether the acquisition was in breach of section 54 of the Competition Act. Section 54 is related to mergers that may potentially reduce competition within any market in Singapore.

According to CCCS, both companies overlap in the supply of fixed income index licensing services in Singapore, and there are “non-horizontal” links between both the London Stock Exchange Group and Refinitiv Holdings in six categories of products, which include trading services, clearing services, index licensing, and financial information products.

The commission had earlier raised concerns about the reduction in competition on the proposed transaction after completing its preliminary review. Based on the information it received, CCCS was unable to conclude that the proposed transaction would not raise competition concerns.

Third parties noted that the merger may reduce the merged entity’s incentive to continue the supply of inputs to rival providers. The third parties added that they have concerns about continued access to Refinitiv’s WM/Reuters foreign exchange benchmarks, which are considered critical inputs for index licensing and derivatives clearing services.

Following the further filing of the relevant documents on August 31, CCCS says it is commencing an in-depth review of the effect of the proposed transaction.

The investigation comes after the European Commission opened an in-depth investigation in June to assess whether the proposed acquisition may reduce competition in trading and clearing of various financial instruments and in financial data products.