Freeport to buy Plains, McMoRan Exploration

Freeport-McMoRan reaches deals to buy Plains Exploration, McMoRan Exploration for at least $9B

Associated Press

PHOENIX (AP) -- Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold says it is buying oil companies Plains Exploration & Production and McMoRan Exploration for about $9 billion.

The additions of the oil and gas drillers are expected to create a natural resources conglomerate with assets ranging from oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico to mines in Indonesia and Africa.

Freeport will buy Plains Exploration Co. for $50 per share in cash and stock totaling $6.9 billion. It will acquire McMoRan Exploration Co. for $14.75 per share in cash, or about $2.1 billion excluding interests already owned by Freeport and Plains.

McMoRan Exploration shareholders will also get a distribution of units in a royalty trust.

The deals are expected to close in the second quarter of 2013.

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