Chase Manhattan Corp. shares rose sharply Thursday as news that it is in talks to combine businesses with a U.K.-based investment bank and asset management group coincided with a series of positive earnings reports from U.S. investment firms.

Chase shares were up $6.9375, or 7.58%, to $98.50, after it acknowledged it is in talks with Robert Fleming Holdings Ltd., one of the last British-owned investment banks. Neither Chase nor Fleming gave details of their negotiations.

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