A wave of mergers and deals, along with better-than-expected Citigroup results, help to lift stocks. Bobbi Rebell reports.
M&A Monday on Wall Street. Mergers helping lift the major indexes. All three closing out the day with gains. Among the big deals - It looks like Abbvie will finally get the ok from its takeover target Shire after it raised its offer to $53 billion. The deal, one of the latest largely tax driven marriages, Abbvie could cut its U.S. tax bill by moving its tax base to the UK. Mylan Labs is buying Abbott Labs, specialty and branded generics business outside the U.S. That all stock deal is valued at about $5.3 billion. And shares of both engineering design firm AECOM Tech and URS rose after AECOM said it would pay $4 billion to buy the engineering and construction services firm. Switzerland's Lindt making its biggest acquisition ever buying U.S. candy maker Russell Stover in a billion dollar deal that will make it the third biggest chocolate maker in the U.S., behind Hershey and Mars. Citigroup stock also a winner. Their adjusted quarterly profits were stronger than expected, fixed income performed ahead of forecasts. Also, the bank cleared another hurdle by reaching a $7 billion settlement over its sale of flawed mortgage securities. But even though all that was well received by investors, Citi's future as an investment remains tough to call. Reuters BreakingViews' Antony Currie: SOUNDBITE: ANTONY CURRIE, BREAKINGVIEWS ASSOCIATE EDITOR, THOMSON REUTERS (ENGLISH) SAYING: " I think you've got to work out if you are going to jump into it now, where do I think this bank is going to be in three or four years times. That is the thing because at the moment the four percent increase today is all about whether they beat earnings or not, and, also, the settlement is getting past them as well, so you get these occasional pops. I don't see a reason for this bank's stock to go much higher. " eBay just got a little more posh. The online auction site is partnering with high-end auction house Sotheby's and will live stream Sotheby's sales. Turning to Europe - Adidas will pay a record $1.3 billion in a 10-year deal to sponsor soccer team Manchester United. By the way, this past weekend both of the teams in the World Cup final - Germany and Argentina - wore Adidas. As for stocks: the week started off with gains, coming back from their biggest weekly loss in four months.