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CME Group May Strike Deal To Stay In Chicago

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

Chicago Mercantile Exchange floor. (Credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The CME Group confirmed to CBS 2 Monday that a deal in the next few weeks may keep the trading firm in Chicago.

The CME Group on Monday confirmed an earlier report by Reuters, which said the firm will decide “shortly” whether or not to keep its headquarters in Illinois or leave the state.

CME tells CBS 2 Political Producer Ed Marshall there is a possibility of closing a deal in the next few weeks that would result in the firm remaining in Chicago.

In the wake of hike in Illinois corporate taxes from 7.3 percent to 9.5 percent this year, CME Group executive chairman Terrence Duffy said in June that the firm might move out of state. He said the tax hike would cost the CME Group cost about $50 million this year.

Since then, other states have been attempting to lure the trading firm.

In June, Florida Gov. Rick Scott wrote to Duffy, saying employees of the firm would be better off in his state. Scott pointed out that Florida has no state income tax and is a “right to work” state in which no one can be required to join a union. His letter suggested that those employees would be from Florida if the company moved.

Florida has a corporate income tax rate of 5.5 percent, and Scott, a Tea Party favorite, has been pushing to repeal that tax so that Florida businesses would pay no corporate income tax to the state at all. So far, Florida lawmakers have resisted that effort.

Meanwhile, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has expressed confidence that some action could be taken to keep the CME Group in Chicago.

“I believe we have many years ahead of us – both of us – as city and the financial institution of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange growing ahead, and I’m confident they’ll see that what has been a successful relationship will continue to be a successful relationship,” Emanuel said on June 9.

The CME Group is the most recent in a slew of companies that have threatened to leave the state over the tax hike.

CBS 2 Political Producer Ed Marshall contributed to this report.