FCC calls hearing on AT&T/T-Mobile

Dylan Bushell-Embling
24 Nov 2011

Another roadblock has been thrown in the way of AT&T's $39 billion bid to acquire T-Mobile USA, with FCC chairman Julias Genachowski calling a hearing to evaluate the deal.

Genachowski has convened the review based on his concerns that the deal would be against the interest of consumers and significantly diminish competition, Wall Street Journal reported.

The regulator is reportedly also concerned that the merger could lead to “massive job losses” - despite AT&T's assertion that it would instead create nearly 100,000 jobs.

The ambitious merger is looking increasingly in doubt, as the move comes after the US Department of Justice sued to block the deal in September.

The FCC hearing would be the regulator's first competition review in nine years, and will probably occur after the DoJ lawsuit is heard.

If the acquisition is squashed, AT&T may need to T-Mobile USA parent Deutsche Telekom a $6 billion break fee. AT&T has already pushed back the planned closure date of the deal to as late as next June, from an original target date of the first calendar quarter.

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