Belgium's Banking Commission has given support to...

Belgium's Banking Commission has given support to Societe Generale de Belgique S.A., the country's biggest and oldest holding company, in its effort to ward off a takeover bid by Italian financier Carlo de Benedetti. The independent commission upheld Societe Generale's right to issue new stock as a defensive move. The ruling is a major victory for the $2.8-billion firm. On Tuesday, by contrast, the Finance Ministry agreed to let De Benedetti raise his stake in Societe Generale to 25%. That would give him effective control over the company, whose share ownership is scattered.

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