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Paramount shares jumped $ 3.50 yesterday to close at $ 46.13 on rumors that CBS is seeking to buy the media conglomerate.

Neither Par nor CBS would comment on the reason for the 8% rise.

More than 875,000 of the company’s shares traded yesterday on the New York Stock Exchange. CBS shares closed up 63 cents to $ 192.13.

Dramatic leap

Par’s stock performance has been jagged since the first of the year, on rumors that the company is either a takeover candidate or a suitor. Last week, the company reported a dramatic leap in profits, double those in 1991, and a 9.2 % increase in revenues to $ 4.26 billion.

Cash to burn

CBS also has been rumored to be an acquisition candidate for Paramount. Both companies are sitting on huge hoards of cash, more than $ 1 billion apiece, that would finance a portion of their respective buyouts.

Wall Street sources also speculated that Par’s run-up, putting it closer to its 52-week high of $ 48.75, was due to “buy” recommendations issued by three media analysts last week: PaineWebber’s Chris Dixon, Seidler Amdec’s Jeffrey Logsdon and First Boston’s Martin Romm.