DOJ reportedly unlikely to approve T-Mobile-Sprint merger as it’s structured

If you believe T-Mobile, the Sprint merger is completely, 100% necessary for it to field a 5G network that is competitive with Verizon and AT&T.

Sprint Executive Chairman Marcelo Claure said the Wall Street Journal report was not accurate.

The Wall Street Journal reported today that the U.S. Department of Justice is unlikely to approve the planned merger between T-Mobile and Sprint as it's now structured.

Justice Department staffers have told T-Mobile US Inc. and Sprint Corp. that their planned merger is unlikely to be approved as now structured, according to people familiar with the matter, casting doubt on the fate of the $26 billion deal.

The Journal says Justice Department antitrust staff, which is reviewing the takeover, questioned the companies' reasoning for it in a meeting this month.

According to people familiar with the matter, the DOJ's antitrust division is concerned that the merger would threaten competition in the market. The FCC also has regulatory oversight of the deal but has not made any waves yet.

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T-Mobile US and Sprint are facing potential rejection of their proposed merger at the US Department of Justice.

Sprint declined to comment. A number of state attorneys general are also reviewing the deal.

"T-Mobile and Sprint could offer concessions, such as assets sales, to address the government's concerns", the Journal wrote.

T-Mobile has spent at least $195,000 at President Trump's hotel in Washington, DC while lobbying for Trump administration approval of the merger.

For the past four years, T-Mobile and Sprint have been trying to merge together. The officials are also reportedly prepared to sue T-Mobile and Sprint if federal officials don't help them to challenge the proposed merger. But the two carriers are said to remain in talks with government officials and regulators. It's unclear when the agencies might make a decision, but the DOJ is likely many weeks away.

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