SAINSBURY…? MAYBE… MAYBE NOT…

This story is perhaps a little tOo gnomish, but when you're Wal-Mart, any small financial move threatens whole business sectors. So when a gnome speculates what Wal-Mart might do if a rumor is true, people get on the phones. From Reuters: Asda, the British grocer of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., could counterbid for J. Sainsbury should a private equity consortium launch an offer for Britain's number three supermarket owner, Citigroup analysts believe. In a research note, Citigroup said Britain's second-largest grocer would be in a position to convince competition authorities it was a better match for Sainsbury than the private equity team currently considering a bid for the group. "We maintain that the market is overly optimistic about a consortium bid, but if one comes, watch out for a higher offer from Asda," Citigroup analysts wrote in the note published after Monday's market close. Maybe, perhaps, kind-of, sort-of, it could happen. Jeff Hess: Have Coffee Will Write.

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