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S&P upgrades outlook on exchange operator CME

NEW YORK (AP) -- Standard & Poor's Ratings Services on Wednesday upgraded its outlook on CME Group Inc., saying it expects profitability will stabilize after a recent decline.

CME runs commodity and derivative exchanges, including the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

S&P lifted CME's outlook to stable from negative and kept its ratings on the company.

S&P's credit analyst Charles Rauch said that CME's profitability has slipped because of patterns in the exchange industry, but should now remain steady for the rest of the year. He blamed the decline on weaker trading volumes for some products tied to interest rates and for less volatility in stock prices.

The company's profit dropped by half last year, to $896.3 million, after nearly doubling in 2011.

CME shares increased 33 cents to close at $64.04.