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KAR stock falls after private-equity deal reported dead

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KAR Auction Services Inc. stock took its biggest daily drop in more than three months Tuesday after Reuters reported the provider of wholesale vehicle auction services ended talks to sell itself to private-equity firm Clayton Dubilier & Rice LLC.

Carmel-based KAR shares tumbled 8.9 percent Tuesday for their biggest one-day drop since Aug. 7 before rebounding slightly. Shares closed at $17.45 each Tuesday, down 6.5 percent on the day.

The companys stock had advanced 39 percent this year through Monday.

The auction company, which has 68 North American locations and whose owners include Kelso Group and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., ended “advanced talks” with Clayton Dubilier, Reuters reported without identifying its sources. Clayton Dubilier, one of the industry’s oldest private-equity firms, and the auction company failed to agree on price, Reuters said.

KAR offers whole-car and salvage services as well as financing and had previously sought a leveraged buyout, Reuters reported in August.

The auction company doesn’t comment on rumors or speculation, Jonathan Peisner, vice president and treasurer of KAR, said. A message left with an assistant for Tom Franco, a partner at New York-based Clayton Dubilier, wasn’t immediately returned.
 

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