The stock price of Time Inc. soared more than $9 Friday as a spate of recent takeovers in the publishing industry helped resurrect old rumors about the nation's No. 1 magazine publishing company.
The shares rose $9.375 to close at $106.625 on the New York Stock Exchange."It smacks to me of raw speculation but with all the takeover activity in publishing you can't take it lightly," said analyst Edward Atorino at Smith Barney, Harris Upham Co.
Firm news was hard to come by, but traders said there were several rumors, all involving the investment banking firm of Wasserstein and Perella. According to one rumor, the firm was advising the publisher of Time magazine on a sale of the company.
Another version had the company considering a restructuring, and in a third rumor the company was about to receive a $150 per share takeover offer.
Time had no comment on the takeover and restructuring rumors swirling around the company. "It's not our policy to comment on rumors," a spokesman said. He said the company knew of no reason for the stock rise.
Asked if Time had retained the investment bank, the spokesman said the company does not discuss its proprietary business relationships.
The New York-based firm of Wasserstein and Perella was also not available to comment. Some traders said they were doubtful of the rumors. But Bruce Wasserstein worked with Time when he was with First Boston Corp. so a continued relationship would not be surprising, media analysts said.