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NBC denies rumors of Lauer, Vieira departure

Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira are co-anchors of TODAY.
Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira are co-anchors of TODAY.NBC News
/ Source: msnbc.com news services

NBC News is denying published media reports that Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira may be leaving their co-anchor spots on TODAY when their contracts expire.

Vieira’s contract expires in September of this year. Lauer’s expires on Dec. 31, 2012.

News of Vieira’s possible departure from the morning television show surfaced on Tuesday. TV Guide reported that the co-anchor has been growing weary of the show’s challenging early-morning hours and may be ready to spend more time with her husband, who has battled multiple sclerosis and cancer.

On Wednesday, stories began emerging about Lauer’s possible departure late next year. An unnamed source told ET and The Insider that Lauer has notified NBC News about his upcoming resignation.

TODAY released the following statement Wednesday: “There seems to be an awful lot of speculation around news anchors these days, and it’s not our practice to comment on any of it. Matt Lauer has a long-term contract with NBC News and TODAY.”

An inside source said there are no talks of Lauer's departure under way.

The departures of TV news anchors and commentators have garnered headlines in the past week. The Associated Press reported on Sunday that Katie Couric was leaving her post as anchor of the CBS Evening News. On Wednesday, Glenn Beck announced that he will be leaving his talk show on Fox News.

Lauer has been co-anchor of TODAY since Jan. 6, 1997. He joined the show in January 1994 as news anchor.

Vieira has served as TODAY’S co-anchor since Sept. 13, 2006. She took the job when Couric left to become anchor at CBS.

TODAY has been America’s No. 1 morning program for 15 years.