surged Monday on a report that
was close to bidding for the flagging wireless carrier.
The Wall Street Journal
reported that a bid for Sprint from Deutsche Telekom was at a preliminary stage and management could walk away before making an offer, according to people close to the deal. If Deutsche Telekom were to acquire Sprint, which has a market capitalization of $22 billion, it would propel its T-Mobile unit to the top wireless position in the U.S.
Sprint was lately up 60 cents, or 7.6%, to $8.49, while Deutsche Telekom was off 1.1% at $17.91. Rival
was flat in early trading, and
was off 0.1%.
Rumors of a Sprint buyout first surfaced in March after a
contributor said Sprint hired Morgan Stanley to explore potential deals and takeovers. At the time, Sprint spokesman James Fisher said it was company policy not to comment on rumors or speculation, and Morgan Stanley also declined to comment.