Reports that GE may make a bid sent Alstom shares spiking this week, and its stock closed nearly 11 percent higher Thursday at $37. The Euronext stock exchange says trading was halted Friday morning at the regulator's request.
The French government is cool to the idea of a buyout of a company that pioneered TGV high-speed trains, later exporting them around the world, and builds nuclear turbines.
Economy Minister Arnaud Montebourg, who has fought against American companies seeking to buy French rivals, told Le Monde on Friday the government is "working on other solutions" for Alstom.
Alstom says it hasn't been informed of an offer.