Nasdaq OMX Group's third-quarter profit fell 18 percent, due in part to a drop in trading volumes in U.S. and Nordic equities, the exchange operator said on Wednesday.
The New York-based company earned $89 million, or 52 cents per share, down from $109 million, or 61 cents per share, a year earlier. Net revenue fell 6 percent to $409 million; analysts had expected $411.9 million.
Excluding restructuring and legal expenses and other one-time items, it earned 62 cents a share, 2 cents above analysts' average forecast, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
"Our strategy to build a diversified franchise that generates substantial recurring revenues and cash flows, even against the backdrop of U.S. and Nordic equity volumes declining over 30 percent year-over-year, is clearly paying dividends," Nasdaq Chief Executive Bob Greifeld said in a release.
Nasdaq said trading volumes were down due to a drop in volatility from a year earlier, when uncertainty surrounding European and U.S. debt problems generated substantial trading activity.
Cash equity trading revenue, which makes up 11 percent of overall revenue, fell to $47 million from $67 million.
Global market data revenue, which makes up 21 percent of overall revenue, rose to $84 million from $80 million.
Derivatives trading and clearing revenue - 18 percent of total revenue - was $72 million, down from $84 million, due to lower volumes.
Operating expenses declined to $239 million from $241 million.
Nasdaq lowered its 2012 operating expense guidance to a range of $922 to $935 million, from $935 to $965 million previously.
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