AT&T defeats feds in merger to buy Time Warner

Mar 2012
New Hampshire
A U.S. appeals court approved wireless carrier AT&T's deal to buy media company Time Warner on Tuesday, a defeat for the U.S. Justice Department, which had argued the $85.4 billion merger would mean higher prices for consumers.

The three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled unanimously in favor of the deal, setting the stage for the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier to integrate its WarnerMedia business as well as its new Xandr advertising unit.

The Justice Department had asked the court to declare the deal illegal, arguing that AT&T, which owns DirecTV, would use ownership of Time Warner’s content, such as CNN and HBO's "Game of Thrones," to make pay-TV rivals pay more, thus raising prices for consumers. AT&T said it hoped that this ruling would end the court fight.

"While we respect the important role that the U.S. Department of Justice plays in the merger review process, we trust that today’s unanimous decision from the D.C. Circuit will end this litigation," said AT&T General Counsel David McAtee in a statement.

The Justice Department had no immediate comment.

AT&T defeats feds in merger fight to buy Time Warner

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