Renault shares are tanking after Fiat Chrysler scrapped their mega-merger

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  • Renault shares plunged 8% on Thursday morning after Fiat Chrysler pulled its offer for the French carmaker.
  • French government officials on Renault’s board postponed making a decision on Wednesday.
  • Renault wanted more time to secure the support of long-time rival Nissan.
  • “It has become clear that the political conditions in France do not currently exist for such a combination to proceed successfully,” Fiat Chrysler said.
  • Watch Renault,Fiat Chrysler, and Nissan trade live.

Renault’s shares plummeted 8% on Thursday morning after Fiat Chrysler pulled its offer for the French automaker.

The merger would have created the world’s third-largest car company with a $US39 billion market capitalisation. However, the proposal fell through after French government representatives on Renault’s board postponed taking a vote – the second delay this week – prompting the group’s American suitor to scrap the deal, according to Bloomberg.

“It has become clear that the political conditions in France do not currently exist for such a combination to proceed successfully,” Fiat Chrysler said in a statement. However, it remained “firmly convinced of the compelling, transformational rationale” of the tie-up.

Renault wanted more time to persuade Nissan to support the merger, after the Japanese automaker raised questions over cost savings and technology sharing. The two companies have been allies for two decades, bulk-buying components together and sharing technology and factory space. Nissan holds 15% of Renault’s shares, while Renault has a 43% stake in Nissan,according to the BBC.

The merger also came under pressure from the French government, which holds a 15% stake in Renault. In recent weeks it had ramped up its demands over jobs, regulation, factories, a board seat, and a payout to shareholders, according to Bloomberg. French labour unions had also voiced concerns over potential job losses.

The demise of the deal sent shares in Fiat Chrysler down 2% in pre-market trading, while Nissan stock slid 2%.

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