Shares of AGL Resources Inc. surged almost 9% in premarket trade Monday, after Southern Co. said it has agreed to buy AGL in a deal with an enterprise value of about $12 billion. Southern Co. said it expects the deal to boost earnings per share in the first full year after the close, and to drive long-term EPS growth to 4% to 5%. AGL will become a wholly owned unit of Southern Co., creating the second-biggest utility in the U.S. by customer base. AGL shareholders will receive $66 in cash for each share, a premium of 36.3% over the volume-weighted average stock price over the last 20 trading days through Aug. 21. "We believe the addition of AGL Resources to our business will better position Southern Company to play offense in supporting America's energy future through additional natural gas infrastructure," Chief Executive Thomas Fanning said in a statement. The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2016. Southern Co. shares were up slightly in premarket trade, but are down 6.7% in the year so far, while the S&P 500 has lost 4.3%.
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