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Duff & Phelps shares climb after buyout announced

The Associated Press

Shares of Duff & Phelps Corp. rose Monday on news that the company had agreed to be acquired.

THE SPARK: The New York financial advisory and investment banking company said Sunday that a group including private equity firm Carlyle Group LP, as well as Stone Point Capital LLC, Pictet & Cie and Edmond de Rothschild Group, will pay $665.5 million to buy it.

THE BACKGROUND: The offer of $15.55 per share is 19 percent higher than the closing price of Duff & Phelps' stock Friday of $13.05.

The deal provides shareholders an "immediate and certain" premium for their shares, and it helps preserve the firm's independence, Duff & Phelps CEO Noah Gottdiener said in a statement Sunday.

The company can look for other offers during a "go-shop" period until Feb. 8. It will pay $6.65 million if it ends the agreement before March 8 in connection with a better offer.

The deal is expected to close by June.

SHARE ACTION: Up 20 percent, or $2.61, to $15.66 in Monday afternoon trading. Shares traded above the bid from the private-equity group, suggesting that investors think there may be a higher offer for the company.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose less than 1 percent.

Duff & Phelps shares have traded between $11.36 and $16.50 in the past 52 weeks. The stock had dropped 10 percent this year before Monday's gain.