Shell has agreed to purchase BG Group for £47B ($69.6B) in a cash-and-stock deal that will add 25% to Shell's proven oil and gas reserves and 20% to its production. The acquisition will also improve the latter's prospects in new projects, particularly in Australian LNG and Brazilian deep water. With Shell paying a premium of 52%, BG Group's shares surged 37% in London, although Shell fell 1.55% premarket in the U.S.
A blockbuster deal to buy BG Group for $70B, with the Europe 600 Oil & Gas index +5.2% at the time of writing. However, although the deal pushed the FTSE 100 higher, the rest of Europe was looking pretty down as the poor German factory figures acted as a bit of dampner.
German factory orders dropped 0.9% on month in February, which badly missed consensus of +1.5% but did represent an improvement from a 2.6% slump in January.
Stocks surged in Asia amid an atmosphere of monetary easing, while U.S. futures were up ahead of the release of the minutes of the latest Fed meeting, which will be scrutinized for clues about when the bank might increase rates.