DreamWorks Animation Stock Soars on Sale, Comcast Shares Also Slightly Higher

A stock specialist on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange August 5, 2011 - H
Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images

The studio's stock soared above the $40 mark in early Thursday trading.

The stock of DreamWorks Animation soared above the $40 mark in early Thursday trading as Wall Street celebrated its $41 per-share deal to be acquired by Comcast's NBCUniversal for $3.8 billion, or $4.1 billion including debt.

As of 10:15 a.m. ET, the stock was up 24 percent at $39.93 after earlier going as high as $40.11, a new 52-week high. DWA shares had in February 2010 hit their all-time high of $43.46.

The $41 price tag marked a premium to Wednesday's closing price of 27.3 percent and a 51.2 percent premium to DWA's Tuesday close before the stock started spiking amid news of the deal talks.

Meanwhile, Comcast's stock also rose early on Thursday. It was up 0.5 percent at $61.58 as of 10:15 a.m. ET in a sign that Wall Street approved of the deal.

"Comcast's strategic rationale makes sense," said Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker. "This makes a lot of sense and will spur growth in animated films, related consumer products and theme parks."

The deal for DWA led Lionsgate's stock to rise more than 7 percent. As of 11:20 a.m. ET, it was up 7.9 percent at $22.37 on the New York Stock Exchange as investors weighed whether talks on the studio's possible acquisition of Starz could restart.

"The [DreamWorks Animation] interest supports our bullish view on standalone studios, as they are untethered to any platform and can leverage multiple ecosystems emerging within media," Amy Yong, an analyst with Macquarie Securities, said in an investor note on Wednesday.

Lionsgate, which has a Canadian domicile, has confirmed on-again, off-again negotiations with Starz as Liberty Media's John Malone, who has a big stake in Starz, eyes a cross-border merger to avoid the U.S. tax net.