Crawley-based TUI Travel saw its share price surge earlier after broker UBS moved the travel group to its merger watch list.
A recommendation to ‘buy’ saw the share price rise 8p to 220p, with continued speculation TUI AG will consolidate its position in the company.
Hanover-based TUI AG presently owns roughly 55 per cent of the smaller TUI Travel.
However, rumours have long circulated the German company will acquire the remaining stock.
The notion was given credence as TUI AG revealed it could fund the move through the sale of its Hapag-Lloyd container shipping division.
UBS added the idea was not new, but it now believes the move could happen soon.
Shares in TUI Travel had risen from 150p at the start of the year to over 200p each today as speculation of a takeover mounts.