Commlaw Source


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

AT&T/BellSouth Merger: The Speculation Continues

We have been on a bit of a hiatus here at Commlaw Source but we're back now, we promise. Luckily, not much has happened in the time since our last update due to the fact that the election froze most Federal regulatory activity. With the Dems on top and committee assignments made on the Senate side, as it was before the election so it is after, with continuing speculation on whether the AT&T/BellSouth merger will be approved by the FCC before the end of the year. And before the new Democratically controlled 110th Congress is seated in January. Democrats on the relevant oversight committees have urged the parties to slow down the merger and warned that the proposed transaction will likely be the subject of oversight hearings in the 110th Congress. Analysts at Stifel/Nicolaus today though said that they believe a bi-partisan approval of the merger at the FCC is possible before year end, which would short circuit such hearings and perhaps allow the Dem FCC Commissioners to get some meaningful conditions on the merged company, but the clock is ticking fast for that to happen.


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