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Securities and Exchange Commission

confirmed Friday that cross-boarder stock-exchange mergers like the proposed marriage of

NYSE Group


and Euronext won't subject overseas companies to U.S. regulation.

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Such mergers would trigger neither mandatory SEC registration of the foreign exchange nor its companies, the SEC said in a "fact sheet" it published to clarify its regulatory stance. Since there's no mandatory registration of companies, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act also would not be mandatory for overseas companies, the SEC said.

The SEC's statements are consistent with Wall Street expectations. Part of the reason both the NYSE and



are pursuing overseas acquisitions is to gain access to a universe of potential listing candidates who aren't dissuaded from going public by the tough securities regulation in the U.S.

"The SEC has been anticipating exchange globalization for some time and will continue to collaborate with its regulatory counterparts abroad to resolve potential regulatory issues in a manner consistent with U.S. law and in a way that protects investors, promotes capital formation, and ensures fair and efficient markets," the agency wrote.