Chipmaker Fairchild pops as much as 23% on sale talk

A Fairchild Semiconductor display at a trade show.
Source: Fairchild Semiconductor

Fairchild Semiconductor surged on Wednesday on reports that the chipmaker has hired Goldman Sachs to find a possible buyer for the company.

The company's stock rocketed 23 percent in midday trading after the report surfaced, before cooling to trade up about 16 percent.

The San Jose, California, company is in talks with possible suitors, including ON Semiconductor and Infineon Technologies, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the matter.

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No deal is assured and a transaction isn't imminent, the report said. Fairchild, ON Semiconductor and Infineon did not immediately respond to CNBC's requests for comment.

The news comes a day after reports surfaced that fellow chipmaker Micron and hard-disk drive maker Western Digital were in talks with memory storage provider SanDisk about a possible acquisition.

As of midday trading on Wednesday, Semiconductor stocks were the worst-performing batch out of the S&P 500 Information Technology industry group year to date.

The group is down about 9 percent on the year, but it has gained more than 12 percent over the last 12 months, according to FactSet.

Fairchild, which is not listed in the S&P semiconductor group, is down about 3 percent year to date.

Fairchild is scheduled to report third-quarter financial results before the bell on Thursday.