Securities regulators are probing Teck Resources Ltd.'s trading activity after a news report this week suggested that the miner was in talks to merge with Chile's Antofagasta PLC, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The British Columbia Securities Commission is examining the dramatic surge in Teck's stock price and volume after Bloomberg News reported that the mining companies were exploring a merger and had held early stage discussions.
The news, which was released Monday afternoon, sent Teck's stock up 15 per cent to $20.14 on the Toronto Stock Exchange before the miners issued separate statements denying the merger discussions. Teck's stock has since dropped below levels it was trading at prior to the report of a potential merger.
The B.C. regulator declined comment. Teck said it was not in a position to comment on the matter. The probe is preliminary and does not imply there was any wrongdoing.
This marks the second time this year that regulators were prompted to review trading after deal reports were published by a news organization. In January, Reuters reported that Samsung Electronics had offered to buy BlackBerry Ltd. The news sent the Canadian company's stock soaring before the companies denied the report. Canadian and U.S. regulators have opened a probe into that trading activity.