U.S. worried AT&T buying Time Warner would hike costs for media rivals: source

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Justice Department is concerned that AT&T Inc’s proposed $85.4 billion acquisition of Time Warner Inc (TWX.N) would raise costs for rival entertainment distributors, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Thursday.

The AT&T logo is seen on a store in Golden, Colorado United States July 25, 2017. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

If the firms merged, the antitrust regulator believes it would also inhibit the ability of “innovative new technologies to deliver content to consumers,” the source said.

The Justice Department has demanded AT&T divest its DirecTV unit or sell Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting unit, which includes news company CNN, in order to approve the deal, sources told Reuters on Wednesday.

Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Bill Rigby

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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