(Updates with regulatory review in third paragraph.)
Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Missouri Public Service Commission staff said they need more time to make a recommendation on Energy Transfer Equity LP’s $5.2 billion purchase of Southern Union Co.
Staff notified the commission in a filing today that it would make its recommendation on or before Jan. 6. The commission had asked its staff to make the recommendation today.
The commission is reviewing the merger because Houston- based Southern Union owns a natural-gas utility in the state, Missouri Gas Energy Inc.
Energy Transfer, based in Dallas, agreed to buy Southern Union on July 19 for $44.25 a share in cash and partnership units. Shareholders are scheduled to vote on the sale Dec. 9 and the deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2012.
Missouri commission officials said they couldn’t comment beyond the public filings. A spokeswoman for Energy Transfer didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment.
--Editors: Jasmina Kelemen, Charles Siler
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