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American Airlines, US Airways near merger agreement, report says

Executives with US Airways Group and the parent company of American Airlines reportedly reached a tentative agreement Wednesday that would create the world’s largest carrier.

Sources familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News that the board of bankrupt AMR Corp. met late Wednesday to vote on a merger.

If approved by AMR’s board, the plan would then go to US Airways’ board, said the people, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. Details of the proposal weren’t disclosed.

Board approval would clear the way for an announcement Thursday, the timetable drafted earlier this week as the two sides worked toward a final agreement, people familiar with the matter have said.

US Airways chief executive officer Doug Parker would be chief executive of the merged airline and American CEO Tom Horton would be non-executive chairman, people familiar with those decisions have said. Parker has said the combined airline would retain the American name and its Fort Worth, Texas, headquarters.

Mike Trevino, a spokesman for AMR, said he had no immediate comment about the status of a merger agreement. Todd Lehmacher, a spokesman for Tempe, Ariz.-based US Airways, also declined to comment.

Both American and US Airways serve Kansas City International Airport, but there is no overlap in service here.

US Airways rose 2.7 percent to $14.66 in trading Wednesday. The shares have more than tripled since Nov. 28, 2011, the day before AMR filed for bankruptcy.

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