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PICO climbs as subsidiary announces IPO plans

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of PICO Holdings Inc. rose Friday after a subsidiary announced plans for an initial public offering of common stock.

THE SPARK: UCP LLC, a homebuilder and land developer, disclosed in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it is looking to raise up to $125 million from its IPO. The company — which is a subsidiary of PICO — did not disclose how many shares it planned to offer or what the expected price range would be.

UCP is giving the underwriters an option to purchase additional shares, but did not specify how many shares that would be. PICO, which is UCP's only stockholder, is also giving the underwriters an option to buy additional shares, but the amount it plans to give was not disclosed either.

PICO, a holding company that also invests in water resource and storage operations and agribusiness along with real estate, may receive some money if the banks managing the offering buy extra stock.

PICO is based in La Jolla, Calif.

There was no immediate response to an email to UCP seeking comment.

SHARE ACTION: PICO's stock gained $1.58, or 7.4 percent, to $23.08 in afternoon trading. The shares have traded between $17.51 and $25.22 over the last year. For the year to date, the stock is up 6.1 percent.