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NYSE Profit Doubles

Revenue rises.


New York Stock Exchange's


profit soared 123% in the first quarter on the heels of last year's acquisition of Archipelago.

In the first quarter, NYSE made $67.6 million, or 43 cents a share, compared to $30.3 million, or 24 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Total revenue rose 54% to $702 million.

The results include $11.1 million in merger-related expenses from both its 2006 acquisition of Archipelago and its recent deal for Euronext as well as "exit costs" associated with the exchange's trading floor consolidation initiatives, it says.

Operating income rose 40% to $74.2 million, or 47 cents a share. Analysts were predicting the exchange would earn 46 cents a share.

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The Big Board's first-quarter results does not include financial reports from Euronext. NYSE acquired the European exchange operator on April 4.

During the first quarter, NYSE completed its implementation of hybrid market. The exchange says that about 20% of share volume is currently handled through brokers who use hybrid's electronic trading.

The exchange has been furiously embracing electronic trading and cutting trading floor space in an attempt to rein in expenses. At the end of the first quarter, total headcount at the exchange was 2,571 employees, down 601 from a year earlier and down 48 employees from the fourth quarter (excluding 41 employees from a small acquisition in January.)

The exchange cut 400 employees in the fourth quarter as part of its trading-floor consolidation.

NYSE's share of "matched" volume of NYSE-listed shares fell to 65.9% from 68.3% in the fourth quarter.

On a conference call Thursday, Nelson Chai, NYSE's CFO, reiterated the exchange's sentiment on acquisitions: while it is focused on integrating its acquisition of Euronext, it is going to be opportunistic.

"That's our first order of business, but our aspiration on globalization is there and you can't always time the moves," Chai said. "We are going to continue to look to expand and if it provides shareholder value we are not going to shy away from moving forward."

Shares rose 91 cents to $87.34 in premarket trading.