Comcast rises on deal news
Shares are up on reports that GE will buy Vivendi's stake in NBC Universal, clearing the way for a potential sale to Comcast.
By Dan Freed, TheStreet.com
Comcast's stock advanced 1.9% to $14.94 a share after rising as much as 3% earlier in the day. The gains came amid after several news outlets, including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, said General Electric had reached an agreement with Vivendi to buy the French conglomerate's 20% stake in NBCU, paving the way for a deal with Comcast.
In Tuesday's trading, Comcast's stock was outpacing shares of Time Warner, Cablevision, News Corp., Walt Disney Company and Time Warner Cable.
The strong performance of Comcast's stock is surprising because shares sank when reports of the proposed deal began to surface in late September. Comcast is expected to take a 51% stake in NBC Universal.
Comcast is pursuing the transaction because it wants to control television content and distribution -- a strategy that has failed in the media industry. However, Comcast faces a severe threat from the Internet, where movies and TV shows are available for free, reducing the value of a cable subscription.
Miller Tabak analyst David Joyce told CNBC's David Faber Tuesday that "Comcast is getting a great deal," on NBCU.
Volume of 12.4 million represents nearly half of the issue's three-month daily average of 25.5 million less than two hours into the session.
Reports of a potential deal between GE and Comcast with regard to NBC Universal first surfaced on Sept. 30. Based on Monday's close at $14.66, Comcast shares were down 16% since their finish at $17.38 on Sept. 29, the session before the reports hit the public.
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The company is planning a 10-for-1 split, which will cut its share price dramatically.
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