Merger Arb Is Back in Vogue, and Bill Gross Is On It


Whereas the world centered on the shares of media corporations after a federal decide authorised AT&T‘s (T) proposed $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner (TWX), different industries additionally benefited from the prospects of mega-deals.

As Barron’s Varada Bhat wrote, the S&P 500’s top-performing shares on Wednesday had been both already concerned in merger actions, or people who is perhaps.


Pharmacy chain CVS Well being (CVS) introduced plans to amass Aetna (AET) for $69 billion in December. However, just like the AT&T/Time Warner deal, the Aetna/CVS acquisition attracted scrutiny from the Division of JusticeThe American Antitrust Institutewrote a letter in March asking Justice’s antitrust division to “will give it the extraordinary scrutiny it deserves,” saying the deal would “probably hurt competitors and shoppers.” In mild of the AT&T/Time Warner approval, that stress has eased: shares of CVS climbed 3.1% to $68.41 yesterday, and one other 0.4% to $68.67 right this moment, and Aetna’s inventory rose 3.7percentto $187.42, and inched up 0.1% right this moment to $187.65.

One investor who had been betting on that deal’s success: Janus Henderson‘s Invoice Gross.

The deal “appears to be like profitable,” Gross tells Barron’s. The shares of the 2 corporations current a possible arbitrage of as much as 10%, he says; he expects the deal to undergo in six months. 

Aetna was the largest reported holding in Gross’s Janus Henderson International Unconstrained Bond Fund (ticker: JUCAX), as of April 30, based on information on the agency’s web site.

The fund obtained caught in a number of the turmoil later that month: Gross was betting that the worth of German bunds would fall however, in response to political upheaval in Italy, they rose, pushing yields decrease. Could 29 was notably dangerous, and information confirmed that the fund misplaced 3%, however Gross informed CNBC yesterday that the determine was “made up;” the fund is “up 2.5% over the previous a number of weeks,” he mentioned. This yr by way of June 12, the fund has misplaced 4.8%, information on Janus’ web site present.

Gross mentioned he nonetheless believes in his “commerce of the yr,” that yields on bunds will rise, narrowing the distinction with U.S. Treasuries.

Signal as much as Assessment & Preview, a brand new day by day electronic mail from Barron’s. Each night we’ll assessment the information that moved markets throughout the day and stay up for what it means in your portfolio within the morning. 



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