Bear Stearns expands its membership to cover the Nordic Exchange in Helsinki

On February 20, 2006, Bear, Stearns International Limited expands its membership of the Nordic Exchange to include Helsinki in addition to Stockholm. Bear Stearns will have access to the two Nordic equity markets within OMX, namely on the Stockholm and Helsinki exchanges.

Jouni Torasvirta, President of the Helsinki Stock Exchange says: “International interest in OMX’s Nordic marketplaces has increased in recent years, and we expect that even more internationally oriented investors will be present on the Nordic Exchange and thus further improve liquidity. It is a pleasure to welcome a new member like Bear Stearns.” The OMX Nordic Exchange Membership allows members operating in one exchange to trade also on the other two exchanges. With one exchange membership, a member can operate more seamlessly across the Nordic borders. “We are very pleased to extend our membership to cover the exchanges in Helsinki”, said Nicolò Brandolini d’Adda, Senior Managing Director and Head of Equities Europe at Bear Stearns. Bear, Stearns International Limited (BSIL) is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Bear Stearns Companies Inc. (NYSE: BSC) BSIL currently employs approximately 1,000 staff in London who serve corporations, institutions, partnerships and governmental entities in the United Kingdom, Europe and the Middle East. BSIL’s capabilities include investment banking, institutional equities and fixed income sales, trading and research, derivatives, financial futures, foreign exchange, private client services and global clearing. Bear, Stearns International Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. For additional information about Bear Stearns, please visit the firm’s website at http://www.bearstearns.com. OMX has altogether 150 members (excluding 94 members that are members of more than one exchange) of which Stockholm Stock Exchange has 86 members, Helsinki Stock Exchange 49 members, Copenhagen Stock Exchange 49 members, Tallinn Stock Exchange 18 members, Riga Stock Exchange 17 members and Vilnius Stock Exchange 25 members. For more information, please contact: Jarmo Holopainen, Communications Manager, Helsinki +358 9 6166 7203 About OMX | OMX is a leading expert in the exchange industry. As owner and operator of the Nordic Exchange in Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Riga, Tallinn and Vilnius, OMX offers access to approximately 80 percent of the Nordic and Baltic securities market. Our integrated technology solutions span the entire transaction chain enabling efficient securities transactions for exchanges, clearing organizations, central securities depositories and other financial institutions around the world. OMX is listed on the stock exchanges in Stockholm, Helsinki and Copenhagen. For more information please visit www.omxgroup.com.

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OMX owns and operates the largest securities market in the Northern Europe and is a leading provider of marketplace services and solutions for the financial and energy markets. OMX consists of two divisions: OMX Exchanges and OMX Technology. OMX Exchanges owns and operates the stock exchanges in Stockholm, Helsinki, Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius as well as the central securities depositories in Finland, Estonia and Latvia.

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