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The Independent: BG lit up by talk that Royal Dutch Shell will pounce on it

Market Report
By Michael Jivkov
Published: 19 September 2006

It may be one of the oldest rumours in the stock market, but talk of a bid for BG Group once again got punters piling into the company yesterday. Shares in BG finished 10p higher at 650p as dealing rooms were set alight by speculation that Royal Dutch Shell is about to pounce on its smaller rival and is willing to pay up to 720p a share to win control of it.

Such a move would value BG at £24bn. Although that is a punchy figure, analysts believe Shell, which has a market capitalisation of £113bn, will certainly be able to manage it. The oil giant is known to be keen to secure new reserves, and BG’s portfolio is an exciting one. At the end of the last month, Shell, which was 10p higher at 1,793p yesterday, was also rumoured to be running the slide rule over Premier Oil.

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