GE-Microsoft drop proposed joint bid for Dow Jones, says report

Mumbai: General Electric Co. discussed a joint bid with Microsoft Corp for Dow Jones & recent weeks, but the idea was abandoned, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The two companies have discussed matching News Corp.''s $60 per share offer for Dow Jones but decided against it a week ago, according to the report in the Journal''s online edition, which cited people involved in the discussions.

"Mainly, the economics just didn''t make sense," said the person, who had not been authorised to speak for companies.

An acquisition would have helped GE combine Dow Jones with its NBC Universal unit, to stave off competition from News Corp., which is planning a business television channel to rival GE''s CNBC.

Dow Jones has also been looking for alternatives to the News Corp. offer, but without any results, the Journal said. But no rival has yet stepped up to compete with Rupert Murdoch''s $5 billion bid for Dow Jones, the publisher of The Wall Street Journal.

Microsoft and NBC were partners in forming the MSNBC cable television network.