According to a statement by the European Commission on Monday, a deadline by October 19th has been set for EU antitrust regulators to rule on the $71.3 billion bid by Walt Disney for Twenty-First Century Foxs entertainment assets.
A filing on the EU competition website showed that Walt Disney had sought approval of the deal by EU regulatory authorities on September 14th.
The assets, that are being purchased by Disney, encompass a cable group with FX Networks, National Geographic and more than 300 international channels along with Twenty-First Century Fox’s stake in Hulu.
At the same time, assets such as ABC, Pixar, ESPN, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm are already under the ownership of Walt Disney along with a multitude of theme parks.
Walt Disney shares closed higher for the fourth time in the past eight trading sessions in New York on Monday. The stock inched up 0.09% ($0.10) to $109.36, after touching an intraday low at $108.61, or a price level not seen since July 13th ($107.66).
Fox shares closed lower for the fifth time in the past eight trading sessions on NASDAQ on Monday. The stock edged down 0.18% ($0.08) to $44.34, after touching an intraday low at $44.22, or a price level not seen since September 12th ($44.12).
According to CNN Money, the 22 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Walt Disney’s stock price, have a median target of $121.00, with a high estimate of $144.00 and a low estimate of $93.00. The median estimate represents a 10.64% upside compared to the closing price of $109.36 on September 17th.
Meanwhile, the 17 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Twenty-First Century Fox Inc’s stock price, have a median target of $50.00, with a high estimate of $52.00 and a low estimate of $45.00. The median estimate represents a 12.76% upside compared to the closing price of $44.34 on September 17th.
The deal can be either cleared with or without concessions by EU antitrust regulators, or the latter could embark on a four-month investigation in case serious concerns emerge.
In June, the deal has been given the green light by the US Department of Justice on condition Fox’s 22 regional sports networks are sold by Walt Disney.