Forest Oil ( FST) agreed to acquire Houston Exploration ( THX) in a $1.5 billion stock and cash transaction.

Additionally, Forest will assume about $100 million of Houston's net debt.

Forest will pay $52.47 for each share of Houston, split almost equally between cash and stock. Houston closed Friday at $48.69. Recently, the stock was gaining $3.31, or 6.8%, to $52.

Shares of Forest were up 25 cents at $31.47 in premarket trading Monday.

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