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US appeals court says AT&T deal to buy Time Warner is legal

Reuters

WASHINGTON, Feb 26 () - A U.S. appeals court upheld on Tuesday a lower court ruling that wireless and satellite TV provider AT&T Inc's deal to buy content maker Time Warner for $85.4 billion was legal under antitrust law.

The three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled per curiam, or unanimously, in favor of the deal, calling the Justice Department's arguments "unpersuasive."

The Justice Department had asked the court to declare the deal illegal, arguing that AT&T, which owns DirecTV, would use ownership of Time Warner's content, such as CNN and HBO's "Game of Thrones," to make pay-TV rivals pay more, thus raising prices for consumers.

AT&T shares were last up 0.5 percent in morning trade.


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