PARIS Veolia Environnement (VIE.PA) and its peer Suez Environnement (SEVI.PA) both denied on Wednesday that the companies are in talks on a merger or even studying such a project.
Shares in Veolia closed 4.3 percent higher and Suez closed 7.1 percent higher following an Exane BNP Paribas research report which said the "stars are aligned" for the French waste and water companies to revisit the idea of merging. Volume in Suez stock was the second highest in more than a year.
"There are no talks ongoing and there is no project for an alliance. The speculation on the bourse is based on nothing," a Veolia spokesman said.
A Suez spokesman also denied alliance plans. "Two years ago we held talks, which were broken off. Today, the project is definitely not on the agenda," he said.
(Reporting by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Anthony Barker)