Will The Halliburton-Baker Hughes Merger Still Go Through?
Halliburton Company (NYSE: HAL) and Baker Hughes Incorporated (NYSE: BHI) announced that they extended the deadline date for the Department of Justice to review the two companies' proposed merger. The new date is November 25, 2015.
James Schumm from Oppenheimer said in a report that the extension "does not change our thinking or have any impact on our estimates" for a December 31, 2015 closing.
Beyond the DOJ, Baker Hughes and Halliburton still need approval from other international regulators, notably in the European Union. While there is no timing on these international approvals, Schumm expected many to "piggyback" on the DOJ decision. Worst case scenario, Oppenheimer argued that the "hard stop date" of April 2016 could easily be extended if need be.
Already, Baker Hughes and Halliburton have agreed to divest additional assets. While those assets are not yet clear, Schumm speculated that they include "stimulation vessels and perhaps completion equipment." He expects more details on the upcoming earnings call. Halliburton reports earnings on Monday, July 20. Baker Hughes reports Tuesday, July 21.
Recently, Morgan Stanley spoke with an antitrust expert, who echoed Schumm's points. That expert also expected the deal to go through, though he did not provide specific timing.
Oppenheimer has an Outperform rating on Halliburton. Year-to-date, the stock has gained 5.1 percent as of Friday's close. Baker Hughes added nearly 6.5 percent this year.
Latest Ratings for HAL
|Dec 2016||Bernstein||Initiates Coverage On||Outperform|
|Oct 2016||Cowen & Co.||Maintains||Market Perform|
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