Husky Energy shares rise on analyst report about potential privatization

CALGARY — Shares in Husky Energy Inc. gained more than five per cent after an RBC Dominion Securities analyst suggested its low share price makes this a good time for the company to be taken private.

The stock closed up 45 cents or 5.13 per cent to $9.22 on Monday, still well off its 52-week high of $22.98 set last Sept. 27.

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In a report over the weekend, analyst Greg Pardy suggests that Husky's near-15-year-low share prices make privatization attractive for the entities controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing which own 69.5 per cent of the equity.

He says going private would allow Husky to capture much of the gap between its market value and base net asset value of $19.53 per share.

The report says Husky doesn't get enough credit for assets including its Liwan natural gas field in the South China Sea, its Canadian East Coast production, its thermal heavy oil projects in Saskatchewan and its U.S. refineries.

In an email, Husky spokeswoman Kim Guttormson declined to address the report, noting the company doesn't comment on speculation.

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