When nature wanted to express its sense of humor, it created the platypus: a creature composed of the features of so many other mammals that when naturalists first stumbled on it they thought it was an elaborate hoax.
If fashion were to have an equivalent, it could be a mash up of Coach (COH) and London's Burberry: an elaborate construct of luxury goods that would -- on the face of it, at least -- seem like a match, but that, more likely would prove to be what one analysts dismissing the suggestion described as "a merger of problems."
Nevertheless, rumors of a combination of the two luxury goods purveyors have skated around the fashion blogs the last two weeks, and don't seem to be going away anytime soon.
The British investment site Betaville reported late last month that Coach has hired Evercore Partners (EVR) to facilitate what it said could be a $20 billion merger. Further accounts on the British blog seemed willing to entertain the possibility that the report could be farfetched.
But the talk does seem to have some legs, even if most of those accounts slip into either the "yes, with a but ...." Or "no, with a maybe ...." sort of explanations. Shares of Burberry, which popped in London late last month on the report, remain at what seem like elevated levels. Earlier this week, Coach reported fiscal first-quarter results that showed that sales inched up over last year's total, but nevertheless fell a little short of analysts' forecasts. The stock wasn't made to suffer, however, as shares added 3%, expanding the gains the stock has notched this year.