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Nasdaq's big win: Kraft leaving the NYSE

June 8, 2012: 10:19 AM ET

Nasdaq finally has something to cheer.  Dow Jones industrial average component Kraft Foods announced Friday that it is moving its listing from the New York Stock Exchange to Nasdaq (NDAQ) on June 26, 2012.

With Kraft's move, Nasdaq is landing not one but two new stocks. Kraft Foods (KFT) will keep its grocery business under the Kraft name and symbol, KFT. Later this year its snacks business with start trading under the name Mondelez with the symbol MDLZ.

When asked about the switch, a NYSE spokesperson said: "It's been a privilege to serve the company and its shareholders."

After Nasdaq's epic bungling of Facebook's (FB) initial public offering, the exchange can finally point to Kraft's move as a sign that companies see something enticing about trading there.

Kraft decided to review its exchange listing when it agreed to split into two companies. It has been meeting with both exchanges for months, said a source close to Nasdaq. The company wrapped up its decision over the past few weeks, said the source.

It's the fourth company that Nasdaq has lured away from its crosstown rival this year. Texas Instruments (TXN) started trading on Nasdaq on the first day of the year, and fellow tech companies Western Digital (WDC) and Analog Devices (ADI) also jumped ship.

While Kraft can at least momentarily burnish Nasdaq's reputation, the NYSE (NYX) is still far ahead of Nasdaq in the defection battle. Eight companies have left Nasdaq this year, including TD Ameritrade (AMTD) and Teva Pharmaceuticals (TEVA).

The biggest test of the two exchanges will come when, and if, there's another initial public offering. But by most accounts, the Facebook fiasco will keep that IPO pipeline frozen shut for awhile.

At an exchange conference Thursday yesterday, Chris Concannon, a former Nasdaq executive who now runs the trading firm Virtu Financial said: "The IPO window is gone, literally gone, because of this IPO. Investors have no more confidence."

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