Alcan Shares Climb On Rio Tinto, Norsk Hydro Bid Speculation

Includes: AA, AL (defunct), NHYDY, RIO
by: Jonathan Liss

Shares of Canadian aluminum producer Alcan climbed 1.5% in pre-market trading Tuesday, as speculation built the company would receive a higher bid from either Norsk Hydro or Rio Tinto than what Alcoa is offering. Alcoa has remained firm on its hostile cash and stock bid for Alcan despite its rejection by Alcan's As of last Wednesday, Alcoa's bid for Alcan stood at $27.6 billion, good for $74.60/share. Talk over the weekend of a Rio Tinto bid was essentially rejected by Rio CEO Oscar Groeneveld. Amid reports Rio has hired Deutsche Bank to advise it over a possible bid for Alcan, Groeneveld said "We always consider opportunities but whether or not we are moving ahead, doing anything like due diligence, is pure speculation." The Globe and Mail quotes investment bankers "working with the two companies" as saying Norsk Hydro has begun work on a $30-billion-plus bid for Alcan. Alcan shares traded as high as $86.50 in pre-market action Tuesday (as of 7:34 A.M. EST).

Sources: Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Globe and Mail, MarketWatch, Reuters
Commentary: Alcan Rejected Marriage Proposal; Now Alcoa Has Something to ProveAlcan/Alcoa Merger: This One Won't Be EasyAlcoa Stays Put on Alcan Bid, Shares Surge on Bid War Speculation
Stocks/ETFs to watch: Alcoa Inc. (NYSE:AA), Alcan Inc. (AL (defunct)), Rio Tinto plc (RTP), Norsk Hydro (NHY). Competitors: BHP Billiton Limited (NYSE:BHP), Companhia Vale do Rio Doce (NYSE:RIO). ETFs: Vanguard Materials VIPERs (NYSEARCA:VAW), iShares Dow Jones US Basic Materials Index (NYSEARCA:IYM), PowerShares FTSE RAFI Basic Materials ETF (PRFM)

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