Gafisa Surges on Speculation Company to Be Sold: Sao Paulo Mover

Gafisa Surges on Speculation Company to Be Sold
Terracas, a residential project with four bedroom apartments being built by Gafisa SA, stands under construction in Alto da Lapa, Sao Paulo on May 29, 2010. Photographer: Paulo Fridman/Bloomberg

Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Gafisa SA, Brazil’s third-biggest homebuilder by revenue, surged the most in four weeks on speculation the company will be sold.

Shares jumped 6 percent to 4.77 reais at the close of trading in Sao Paulo, the biggest one-day advance since Jan. 2, after earlier rising as much as 9.8 percent. It was the best performer on the benchmark Bovespa index, which gained 0.5 percent.

Gafisa will be sold to U.S. investors who plan to buy all of the homebuilder’s outstanding shares, Relatorio Reservado reported today, citing an unidentified employee. The deal will be announced as soon as next week, the newsletter said.

“Earnings have disappointed, so an acquisition could be a good thing for shareholders, depending on the price offered,” Erick Hood, an analyst at SLW Corretora brokerage, said by phone from Sao Paulo. “All we have now is speculation.”

An official at an external press relations firm representing Gafisa, who asked not to be identified in accordance with company policy, said the homebuilder doesn’t comment on market rumors.

Gafisa’s consolidated new projects fell 21 percent in 2011 and came at the bottom of its forecasted range of 3.5 billion reais ($2 billion) to 4 billion reais, according to a regulatory filing on Jan. 19. Contracted sales dropped 16 percent from a year before.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ney Hayashi in Sao Paulo at ncruz4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos in New York at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net