US media conglomerate Comcast has denied reports that it is in takeover talks for ITV.

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The company, which owns US network NBC and its sister Hollywood studio NBC Universal, has taken the unusual move of issuing a statement that it is not preparing an £11bn bid for the free-to-air broadcaster.

This weekend, The Mail on Sunday reported that Comcast had held acquisition talks with the British business.

“We don’t comment on M&A rumours, but the speculation on ITV is just completely inaccurate,” said a Comcast spokesperson.

ITV shares closed 3% higher to £2.73 per share last night as a result of the speculation, but dropped this morning to £2.65 after Comcast issued its rebuttal.