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Thursday 18th of September 2008
March 6, 2006

Wall Street mixed on mergers


by Elaine Frei

The New York equities markets were mixed at midday on Monday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite up slightly but the S&P 500 down a bit on losses in the energy sector.

The Dow was up 0.1 percent by mid-session to 11,028.71. The Nasdaq had risen by 0.2 percent to 2,306.96. The S&P, however, was down 0.1 percent to 1,286.58.

Mergers and acquisitions provided much of the day’s activity. AT&T lost 1.4 percent to $27.61 on a weekend announcement that it will purchase BellSouth for $67 billion, making AT&T the world’s largest telecommunications company. The loss came despite an upgrade from “market perform” to “outperform” by Wachovia Securities. BellSouth, with an upgrade from Bear Stearns, gained 11 percent to $34.72.

Elsewhere in the sector, Verizon dropped 0.1 percent to $33.54. Qwest Communications, which is seen as another takeover target, gained 4.6 percent to $6.98. Alltel was up 4 percent to $66.86, while Sprint Nextel rose by 3.2 percent to $24.97.

General Motors was up 4.3 percent to $20.04 on the news that Suzuki Motor has agreed to buy out its 17 percent of the company for $2 billion, money GM will use in its restructuring efforts.

General Electric, meanwhile, agreed to purchase iVillage. GE was up 0.5 percent on the announcement to $33.22 and iVillage gained 5 percent to $8.38.

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