is reportedly in advanced talks to buy New Jersey's largest utility group,
Public Service Enterprise Group
The Wall Street Journal's
online edition on Friday, the deal, which is estimated to be worth roughly $12 billion, if consummated, would create one of the largest electric companies in the U.S., with service areas that would spread across Illinois and the Mid-Atlantic states.
Exelon, a Chicago-based public utility holding company, would also assume PSE&G's nearly $13 billion in long-term debt, giving the deal a total enterprise value of about $25 billion.
The talks reportedly were at a sensitive place and could still fall apart; but unnamed sources cited by the newspaper said that an announcement of the deal could come as early as next week.
Shares in PSE&G were recently up $1.41, or 2.9% , to $48.68 in after-hours trade; they closed the regular session up $1.66, or 3.6%, to $47.27. Exelon shares were recently up 8 cents in after the bell, or 0.1%, to $41.94. They ended the day down 74 cents, or 1.7%, to $41.86