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5 Things You Need To Know About The AT&T-Time Warner Merger Trial

AT&Tis set to battle it out with the Department of Justice on Monday as the trial for the proposed AT&T-TimeWarner merger is set to begin. Here are five key things to know as the trial gets under way.

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The Justice Department's Argument

The Justice Department surprised the industry in November when it came out against the proposed AT&T-Time Warner merger. Its stance is that the merged company’s distribution ability and content assets would give it too much leverage in negotiations with the rest of the industry. The department also believes that combined with Time Warner, AT&T could demand higher licensing fees from other cable and satellite firms for popular programming, and that those raised prices would be passed on to consumers at an estimated cost of 45 cents a month, or a combined $436 million annually for cable and satellite subscribers, the agency estimated.

Many in the telecom and entertainment industry believed that the Republican-led Justice Department, under its antitrust chief Makan Delrahim, would be less critical of the deal from an antitrust perspective, even though now-President Trump criticized the deal on the campaign trail, saying it would put "too much power into the hands of two few."

 
 
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