Business: A Whale of a Deal in the Air

Pan Am's $300 million bid to go National

With a fleet of 55 modern planes, modest debt and a depressed stock price, Miami-based National Airlines, the U.S.'s eleventh largest carrier, has long been ripe for takeover. Even so, the industry was startled in July when it became known that Houston's scrappy little Texas International Airlines had quietly bought more than 9% of National's stock; later it won Civil Aeronautics Board permission to pick up as much as 25%. As one Wall Street analyst put it, Texas International was a "sardine chasing a shark." Last week...

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