Market Minute: Hudson's Bay to Buy Saks for $3 Billion

Hudson's Bay to Buy Saks for $3 billion
Keith Srakocic/APPeople walk along Smithfield Street in downtown Pittsburgh past the Saks Fifth Avenue department store on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2011.

A trio of big mergers shakes up the retail, advertising and biotech industries.

The Dow Industrials edged slightly higher last week for their fifth consecutive weekly gain. The Nasdaq rose seven-tenths of a percent, and the S&P 500 was virtually flat.

The Canadian retailer Hudson's Bay has agreed to buy the luxury chain Saks (SKS) for nearly $3 billion dollars. Hudson's Bay acquired rival retailer Lord & Taylor a few years ago. It sees Saks as a good fit with its other properties, especially because of the prime real estate Saks has for it stores.

The advertising company Omnicom (OMC) is merging with French rival Publicis Group. The combined company will be worth more than $35 billion dollars, moving it past WPP as the largest ad company in the world. The companies said the deal was driven in part by the rapid growth of digital advertising, which is dominated by Facebook (FB) and Google (GOOG).

And drug maker Perrigo (PRGO) has agreed to pay $8.6 billion dollars to acquire Elan, the Irish biotech firm. Analysts say the deal is as much about the low tax rate in Ireland as it is about the products made by Elan.

Dell (DELL) Chief Executive Michael Dell tells the Wall Street Journal that he will stay on at the company he founded, even if his offer to take the company private is voted down by shareholders this week.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM) is looking to exit a line of business that has become controversial for a big financial company: It wants to sell its physical commodities division, which includes metals warehouses and power plants. Congress has begun to look into the ownership of these businesses by JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs (GS), and Morgan Stanley (MS), to see if they tried to manipulate markets.

And the FDA has put out a new warning about a Nizoral, a fungal medicine made by Johnson & Johnson (JNJ). The agency says the drug can cause liver and gland problems.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg