There remains no certainty that a transaction will be forthcoming however, the LSE said.
The LSE is widely believed to be targeting Russell as it covets the index business within the group, and acquiring the whole business would allow it to strip that out and add it to its existing range of offerings such as the FTSE indices.
With much of Russell’s focus being on the United States, a deal would bolster the LSE’s competitive position in relation to S&P Dow Jones and MSCI.
Russell’s range ranks companies around the world of various market caps and includes the Russell 1000, Russell 2000, Russell 3000, Russell Global, Russell Developed and Russell Emerging Markets indices.
Analysts have pointed to significant synergies between the LSE’s current activities and the Russell Investments index business as another key driver for the deal.
Northwestern Mutual announced it was “exploring options” for its ownership of Russell Investments in January this year, with the LSE confirming its interest in reaching a deal earlier this month.