ICE profit drops 27% on weak growth in transaction and clearing unit

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(Reuters) – Intercontinental Exchange Inc (N:), which owns the New York Stock Exchange, reported a 27% fall in fourth-quarter profit on Thursday, hurt by muted growth in its transaction and clearing business.

Total revenue, excluding transaction-based expenses, fell nearly 1% to $1.30 billion, in line with analysts’ expectations, as weak transaction and clearing business offset a rise in revenue at its data services unit.

NYSE-owner ICE has been focusing more on more stable business like data services, moving away from market-dependent services, in a bid to minimize the impact of volatility swings.

The company said revenue from its data and listing unit, which includes pricing, analytics and exchange data feeds and connectivity, rose to $672 million from $651 million.

Revenue from the transaction and clearing unit fell 3.2% to $626 million in the quarter.

Net income attributable to the company fell to $448 million, or 80 cents per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, from $611 million, or $1.07 per share, a year earlier.

The company reported an adjusted profit of 95 cents per share, in line with average analysts’ estimates.

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