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US: Merger talk boosts Reynolds, Time Warner but Wall St ends flat

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Megamerger buzz returned to Wall Street on Friday on a mixed day for US stocks, with shares of Time Warner and Reynolds American both surging on news of separate takeover deals.

[NEW YORK] Megamerger buzz returned to Wall Street on Friday on a mixed day for US stocks, with shares of Time Warner and Reynolds American both surging on news of separate takeover deals.

Tobacco giant Reynolds American shot up 14.0 per cent after British American Tobacco launched a US$47 billion bid to buy the 58 per cent of the company it does not yet own.

Time Warner jumped 7.8 per cent as the Wall Street Journal reported that telecom giant AT&T was in advanced talks to acquire the entertainment group. AT&T fell 3.0 per cent.

Microsoft jumped 4.6 per cent to top its 1999 record high after it reported a better than expected US$4.7 billion in net profit.

At the closing bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.1 per cent at 18,145.71.

The broad-based S&P 500 lost less than 0.1 per cent at 2,141.16, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.3 per cent to 5,257.40.

AFP

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