and rival energy trader
confirmed Thursday they were in merger talks.
According to reports, Dynegy held talks to acquire Enron for up to $8 billion in stock and to make an immediate cash infusion of up to $2 billion to help relieve Enron's debt crisis. The possible agreement is said to have the backing of
, which owns about a quarter of Dynegy.
Enron shares continued their recent fall, dropping 16 cents to $8.89, while Dynegy jumped $1.83 to $34.83.