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Shareholders to Vote on Exxon-Mobil Merger

May 27, 1999|BLOOMBERG NEWS

Exxon Corp. expects resounding approval when shareholders vote today on its plan to create the largest publicly traded oil company by buying Mobil Corp. for $88 billion in stock and assumed debt.

Stockholders of both companies have good reasons to vote yes. Exxon said the buyout would add $2.8 billion a year to earnings. Mobil shareholders would get $105.86 a share if the transaction closed today, 40% more than their shares were worth in late November before news of the buyout leaked.

Even with yes votes, the marriage of the two largest U.S. oil companies can't be consummated for several more months, if it is at all. Antitrust regulators in the U.S. and Europe are studying how the merger could hurt competition, and they may try to block it or force the companies to sell assets such as gas stations and refineries as a condition of approval.

Shareholders of the companies will meet in separate Dallas hotels near Exxon's Irving, Texas, headquarters at 10 a.m. local time today. On Wednesday in New York Stock Exchange trading, Exxon shares rose $1.75 to close at $81.94, and Mobil shares climbed $3.25 to close at $103.06.

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