FairPoint shares jump as analyst sees approval ‘more likely than not’

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Shares of FairPoint Communications jumped yesterday after a Wall Street analyst said the company’s planned purchase of Verizon assets in northern New England is likely to be approved, perhaps by year’s end.

FairPoint’s proposal to buy Verizon’s 1.6 million access lines and Internet service in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont must be approved by regulators in all three states.

But JPMorgan analyst Jonathan Chaplin said in a client note that he thinks approval is “more likely than not.”

The acquisition must be approved by the Federal Communications Commission in addition to state regulators. Chaplin said he would not be surprised if approvals stretch into next year. FairPoint’s shares rose 7.6 percent in afternoon trading.

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