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Justice Department to allow Bayer's acquisition of Monsanto: Dow Jones

  • The Justice Department will allow Bayer's deal to acquire Monsanto for $62.5 billion, Dow Jones reported.
  • The acquisition was in limbo until the companies could come to an agreement with the department.
  • Announced in 2016, the tie-up is set to create an agricultural powerhouse.
Monsanto DeKalb brand hybrid corn is loaded into a Case IH planter in a field in Princeton, Ill., April 18, 2016.
Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Monsanto DeKalb brand hybrid corn is loaded into a Case IH planter in a field in Princeton, Ill., April 18, 2016.

The Justice Department will allow Bayer's deal to acquire Monsanto for $62.5 billion, Dow Jones reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Monsanto shares rose more than 6 percent in trading Monday afternoon, reaching as high as $126.80.

The acquisition was in limbo until the companies and the department could come to an agreement, which has now been established on principle. Bayer CEO Werner Bauman and Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant met recently with department officials, according to the report.

The meetings resulted in the companies pledging to sell further assets in order to win government approval. After Bayer won EU antitrust approval on March 21 for the deal, U.S. officials expressed concern that a combination would disadvantage American farmers. The use of genetically modified seeds by U.S. farmers would leave them unable to compete with their European counterparts, where use of genetically modified seeds is banned.

Bayer will divest business assets related to seed treatment, as well as yield ownership of parts of its digital agriculture business, the report said. Rival BASF will acquire those assets, in addition to more than $7 billion in assets Bayer agreed to sell as a part of the EU approval.

Announced in 2016, the tie-up is set to create a company with control of more than a quarter of the world's seed and pesticides market.