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US Airways, American Airlines Close to Merger Deal

Thursday, 7 Feb 2013 | 7:10 AM ET
News Taking Flight
CNBC's Phil LeBeau has the update on two big developments coming from the aviation sector this morning. Boeing has a plan to fix its 787 battery problem, and a merger in the works to create the world's largest airline.

US Airways and AMR, the parent of American Airlines, are close to reaching a merger agreement, in a deal that would create the world's largest airline, according to a person familiar with the situation.

The deal is close to being complete, CNBC learned, but an announcement of the deal could come in the next couple of weeks.

People close to the discussions said an all-stock deal between the air carriers would be executed as a reorganization plan that takes AMR out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The combined company would be worth more than $10 billion.

Under the deal, American creditors would own about 72 percent of the airline and US Airways shareholders would own about 28 percent, according to people with knowledge of the deal.

The air carriers' unions have already approved the specifics of the deal, sources said. But the transaction is still waiting the finalization of certain financial deals and approvals from creditors.

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