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Fiat Chrysler and PSA Up on Report Auto Makers’ Merger to Be Announced Thursday

Shares of Fiat Chrysler (FCAU)  and PSA Group,  (PUGOY) , the owner of Peugeot, were higher on Wednesday on a report that the auto makers’ agreement to merge will be announced tomorrow.

People familiar with the situation told the Wall Street Journal of the plans.

PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares would become CEO of the merged company, and Fiat Chrysler Chairman John Elkann would chair the new entity, the sources told the paper.

Peugeot’s parent will occupy six board seats and Fiat gets five, according to the sources. They said PSA will pay 3 billion euros to its shareholders from selling its stake in Faurecia, a French auto parts maker.

The companies have discussed the deal with the governments of the U.S. and France, the sources said. The French government owns 12% of PSA Group.

Fiat Chrysler and PSA also talked about the possibility of combining earlier this year,

FCAU shares were trading at last check up 7.2% at $15.25. PSA shares traded at $30.14, up 2.9%.

Both companies sell many of their cars in Europe, which creates an opportunity for hefty cost cuts, The Journal reports. But as European auto companies have learned over the decades, the political sentiment against cutting factory jobs is strong.

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