Charles Schwab on Thursday said it has completed the acquisition of online options brokerage OptionsXpress for about $1 billion to capitalize on the profitable business of options trading.

The deal gives Schwab a rising star options trading at a small premium -- about $18 a share. Schwab already offers options trading through its discount brokerage but can make a more concentrated effort in the options market which has become far more attractive in recent months

TD Ameritrade Holding Corp., Schwab's rival similarly tried to beef up its foothold in options when it acquired options trading specialist thinkorswim Group inc. in 2009 for $606 million. 

Shareholders of OptionsXpress, which provides brokerge services for equity options and futures, will receive 1.02 shares of Schwab stock for each share of OptionsXpress. Schwab said it expects the acquisition to boost earnings over the first year of combined operations through cost savings.


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