A Merger of a Different Sort

ON BALANCE

Amid the big acquisition stories of the past few months, another sort of merger caught our eye: Dow Jones Indexes and FTSE Group are merging their industry classification systems.

Indices rarely get much attention but institutional investors, at least, depend on them, and on classification systems. These systems denote which companies are alike and which are not, which ought to follow the latest trend and which shouldn’t. Ultimately, they help investors decide what stock to buy--and what to s