Copps says AT&T, T-Mobile to have it tougher than Comcast

When it comes to straight-up dollars and cents, AT&T's (NYSE: T) proposed $39 billion takeover of T-Mobile is a slightly bigger deal than Comcast's (Nasdaq: CMCSA) $30 billion merger with NBCUniversal--billions being what they are these days. In terms of market share and how much influence it would give a single entity, it's an outsized deal that will have a "steeper climb" to approval, says FCC Commissioner Michael Copps.

The Commission, Copps said, will have to spend time studying "what competition will be left" if the two giants merge and, even more importantly, how that will impact an already sour jobs market. Unlike with Comcast, where the FCC imposed a number of conditions before approving the merger, just adding hurdles might not be enough this time, Copps said during an episode of C-SPAN's "The Communicators" set to air this weekend.

"Sometimes it seems like we're just the federal merger commission," he said. "Why do we spend so much time trying to make what some people would deem unpalatable minimally acceptable? Is that the best we can do for competition?"

For more:
- The Hill has this story

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