Justice Department appeals approval of AT&T-Time Warner deal

Justice Department appeals approval of AT&T-Time Warner deal

AT&T said in a statement Thursday that judge Richard Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia correctly decided the case.

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) has been involved in a long-running battle to stop the takeover, which it argues will result in higher prices and less competition.

The logos for Time Warner and AT&T appear in June above trading posts at the New York Stock Exchange.

The DoJ gave notice to the court of its attention to appeal but has yet to file arguments.

Stung by a federal judge's dismissal of its objections to AT&T's megamerger with Time Warner, the Trump Justice Department is challenging the decision with a legal appeal.

AT&T and Time Warner executives have said they were confident they would win an appeal of the merger because of the judge's sweeping rejection of the government's case.

Among networks under Time Warner's umbrella are HBO, CNN, TNT and TBS.

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"The court's decision could hardly have been more thorough, fact-based, and well-reasoned", he said.

As a candidate for president, Donald Trump said he opposed the deal, say it would be "too much concentration of power in the hands of too few".

Judge Leon ruled, "Ultimately, I conclude that the Government has failed to meet its burden to establish that the proposed 'transaction is likely to lessen competition substantially".

David McAtee, AT&T general counsel, said the company was surprised by the Justice Department move and would defend the court's approval.

The DOJ appeal - and its potential success - could threaten AT&T's plans to deliver new video offerings such as AT&T WatchTV, a broadband-delivered video service with 30-plus channels, made available free to consumers under two new AT&T unlimited plans or for $15 monthly for other consumers.

The deal also seemed to set the stage for even more consolidation between telecom and media companies, leading Comcast to challenge Disney for ownership of Fox's film and TV assets. 589.17 million shares or 1.52% less from 598.25 million shares in 2017Q4 were reported.

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