McMoRan Exploration target for buyout

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 5, 2012 at 8:04 am •  Published: December 5, 2012
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NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of McMoRan Exploration jumped nearly 50 percent before Wednesday's opening bell, after the Financial Times reported on its front page that the company could be the target of a buyout

Citing people familiar with the matter, the paper reported that Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. wants to return to its roots as an energy producer and that in addition to buying McMoRan Exploration, an oil and gas driller, it wants to acquire a large oil and gas group. That would potentially give Freeport two companies that operate oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico.

The result would be a big shift in strategy for Freeport and create a natural resources conglomerate worth close to $50 billion including debt.

New Orleans' McMoRan Exploration was spun off from Freeport in 1994.