Antitrust Review of the AT&T/T-Mobile Transaction
40 Pages Posted: 31 May 2011 Last revised: 25 Dec 2013
Date Written: May 18, 2011
In this Essay, we review AT&T Inc.’s proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA, Inc., under federal merger law, under the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission’s 2010 Horizontal Merger Guidelines, and with a focus on possible remedies. We find, under a rule of law approach, that the proposed acquisition is presumptively anticompetitive, and the merging parties in their public disclosures have failed to overcome this presumption. Next we find that under the Merger Guidelines, there is reason to believe that the transaction may result in higher prices to consumers under several different plausible theories. Finally, we turn to the question of possible remedies. We conclude that there is a high likelihood that divestitures will not solve the competitive problems, and make the case for enjoining the acquisition.
Keywords: Clayton Act, merger, antitrust
JEL Classification: G34, K21, L40, L41, L43, L96
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation