Finance MORGAN STANLEY: These 7 brand name companies could be takeover targets

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Merger activity will continue to be relatively strong in 2017. Here are seven big name companies that could be a takeover target in 2017.

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(Jack in the box Facebook)

But a note out March 20 by a group of equity strategists at Morgan Stanley said that M&A activity will continue to be above "the long term median" over the course of the next 12 months.

"The fraction of the largest 1000 stocks receiving tender offers in the prior 12 months declined from 5.1% in June 2016 to 3.9% in December 2016," the bank said.

"This rate is still above the post-1983 median of 3.0%," the bank added.

Using their model, ALERT (Acquisition Likelihood Estimate Ranking Tool), the bank identified some of the key characteristics of firms that received takeover offers in the last 12 months.

These firms, according to Morgan Stanley, "were far more likely to have underperformed their sector peers and had weak price momentum."

Morgan Stanley used that information to produce a list of companies that have a high likelihood of receiving a takeover offer in the next 12 months.

Following are seven companies from Morgan Stanley's list that you will likely recognize.

Domino's Pizza

Domino's Pizza play

Domino's Pizza

(MI)

Ticker: DPZ

Market Cap: $8.83 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $185.03

Industry: Hotel, Restaurants & Leisure



Michaels

Michaels play

Michaels

(MI)

Ticker: MIK

Market Cap: $4.31 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $22.27

Industry: Specialty Retail



AMC Networks

AMC Networks play

AMC Networks

(MI)

Ticker: AMCX

Market Cap: $3.98 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $58.54

Industry: Media



Regal Entertainment Group

Regal Entertainment Group play

Regal Entertainment Group

(MI)

Ticker: RGC

Market Cap: $3.50 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $22.49

Industry: Media



Tribune Media

Tribune Media play

Tribune Media

(MI)

Ticker: TRCO

Market Cap: $3.38 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $37.45

Industry: Media



Wendy's

Wendy's play

Wendy's

(MI)

Ticker: WEN

Market Cap: $3.27 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $13.45

Industry: Hotel, Restaurants & Leisure



Jack in the Box

Jack in the Box play

Jack in the Box

(MI)

Ticker: JACK

Market Cap: $3.09 billion

List Price as of 3/17: $99.7

Industry: Hotel, Restaurants & Leisure