U.S. Justice Department considering lawsuit to block AT&T’s purchase of Time Warner

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The U.S. Department of Justice may block the merger between AT&T and Time Warner if the government and companies can´t agree on a settlement, the Wall Street Journal reported citing people familiar with the matter.

Currently, the agency and the companies are discussing the conditions they need to meet in order to win government approval. The American newspaper reported that the department’s antitrust division is preparing for litigation in case it decides to sue to block the deal, the people said.

“When the DOJ reviews any transaction, it is common and expected for both sides to prepare for all possible scenarios. For over 40 years, vertical mergers like this one have always been approved because they benefit consumers without removing any competitors from the market. While we won’t comment on our discussions with DOJ, we see no reason in the law or the facts why this transaction should be an exception”, AT&T said in a statement on Thursday.

AT&T has already obtained the approval in several Latin American countries. The company expects the transaction to close by the end of 2017. 

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