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DoJ Will Sue To Block AT&T-Time Warner Merger

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DoJ Will Sue To Block AT&T-Time Warner Merger
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The U.S. Department of Justice will sue to block the long-awaited merger between AT&T Inc (NYSE: T) and Time Warner Inc (NYSE: TWX), Reuters reported Monday afternoon.

Lawsuit Comes As No Surprise

The DoJ had been said to be mulling such an action since earlier this month, with some expressing concern that the move was politically motivated given President Donald Trump's intermittent social media attacks on CNN, Time Warner's flagship news network.

The DoJ is reportedly concerned that AT&T would use Time Warner content to force competitors to pay more for content, according to Reuters.

AT&T Responds

AT&T responded in a statement, calling the lawsuit "a radical and inexplicable departure from decades of antitrust precedent." The company reiterated that vertical mergers of this type are routinely approved.

"We see no legitimate reason for our merger to be treated differently," the statement said. "Fortunately, the Department of Justice doesn't have the final say in this matter. Rather, it bears the burden of proving to the U.S. District Court that the transaction violates the law. We are confident that the court will reject the government's claims and permit this merger under longstanding legal precedent."

The companies will hold a joint conference call at 5:30 p.m. ET to discuss the deal. After hours, AT&T shares traded slightly higher, Time Warner stock moderately lower.

Related Links:

AT&T Resists DoJ Order To Divest Time Warner's CNN For Merger Approval

Antitrust Suit Could Block AT&T's Purchase Of Time Warner 

Posted-In: AT&T Department of Justice Time WarnerNews Legal M&A Best of Benzinga

 

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