Shares of Tribune Media Co. were up more than 12% early on Wednesday following a Reuters report that the media and entertainment company has been approached by Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. for conversations about a potential deal. Sinclair shares were up nearly 6%. A deal would combine two of the largest local TV station owners in the country. Tribune has a market capitalization of $3.0 billion and Sinclair has a $3.6 billion market capitalization. Tribune Chief Executive Peter Liguori has said he will step down later this month. The company has yet to name a replacement. Tribune also reported earnings for the the fourth quarter on Wednesday in which the company swung to a profit, boosted by political advertising. The company missed Wall Street expectations on per-share earnings and revenue, however, and provided downbeat expectations for 2017, forecasting revenue between $1.87 billion and $1.92 billion, below FactSet's consensus of $2.10 billion. Shares of Tribune Media are up less than 1% in the trailing 12-month period, underperforming Sinclair, up more than 26% and the S&P 500 index , which is up more than 20% during the same time frame.
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