Investors hunting for a merger candidate Friday turned their attention back to Wells Fargo & Co. after another California institution, Bay View Capital Corp., nixed rumors that it is about to sell.

Shares of Wells Fargo spiked $10.75, to $363.25. Much of the rise came around 12:30 p.m., moments after Bay View, a San Mateo-based thrift company, quashed speculation that it was negotiating to sell to Washington Mutual Inc., Seattle.

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