Australia's Leighton shares jump as shareholder seeks to lift stake

SYDNEY, March 10 Sun Mar 9, 2014 8:35pm EDT

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SYDNEY, March 10 (Reuters) - Shares in Leighton Holdings Ltd jumped as much as 11.7 percent on Monday after top shareholder, Germany's Hochtief AG said it was seeking to boost its stake in the Australian construction firm to almost 75 percent.

Leighton shares hit a high of A$23.15 and last traded up 11 percent at A$23.00.

Hochtief plans to make a conditional off-market offer to acquire 3 out of 8 shares not owned by Hochtief for A$22.15 cash per share, the company said in a statement. (Reporting by Lincoln Feast; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)