DOJ lets important deadline pass in T-Mobile/MetroPCS deal

The Department of Justice has allowed an important waiting period required by antitrust law to elapse, indicating that it doesn't find any objections to the merger between T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS.

The Department of Justice seems to be giving the green light to T-Mobile USA in its bid to buy MetroPCS.

On Tueseday, MetroPCS announced that the DOJ has allowed the waiting period to lapse on the planned merger between the two companies. The waiting period was required under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976. This indicates that the DOJ doesn't have any objections to the merger. There are still other regulatory approvals the companies must get in order to close the deal. The Federal Communications Commission must approve the transfer of spectrum licenses.

There has been some opposition to the merger, including some pushback from labor unions that contend the merger will put jobs in jeopardy. After stating that the merger would create jobs, T-Mobile and MetroPCS recently filed a statement with the FCC admitting that there would be job losses. But the companies said the job losses would be minimal.

The companies also need approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment, since T-Mobile is a wholly owned subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, a German telecommunications company.

And finally the companies also must get shareholder approval to close the deal. MetroPCS said it is strongly urging shareholders to approve the deal and, in a statement, said it expects the deal to close shortly after the April 12 meeting of stockholders.

About the author

Marguerite Reardon has been a CNET News reporter since 2004, covering cell phone services, broadband, citywide Wi-Fi, the Net neutrality debate, as well as the ongoing consolidation of the phone companies. E-mail Maggie.


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