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Takeover rumour orgy hits Reuters, EMI and Yahoo!

Name your suitors...

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Three major takeover rumours are sending stock markets into a tizzy this afternoon.

Reuters shares jumped more than 25 per cent after the news provider confirmed a takeover approach. While the company confirmed it had received an approach, reportedly from Canadian news provider Thomson, it stressed talks were at an early stage.

Shares hit 637p pushing the company's value to £7.8bn. The move is seen as plausible by markets because it follows Rupert Murdoch's offer for Dow Jones earlier this week.

Next up on the rumour mill is Microsoft's takeover of Yahoo! According to the New York Post, talks have intensified since Google's successful bid for DoubleClick.

The theory is that Microsoft is looking for a quick way to improve its share of internet advertising. Yahoo!'s new ad platform Panama is just getting going and could provide the impetus for the deal.

The Post reckons the two have re-entered formal talks. Yahoo! could be worth as much as $50bn.

And finally there's EMI. The record label watched its shares jump 10 per cent as it confirmed it is in early talks with several suitors, but said no definite bid had been made. EMI has had a difficult few years and is in the process of restructuring.

The Financial Times names private equity group One Equity as the likely bidder and puts a price of £6bn on EMI. ®

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