Today, Judge Victor Marrero, of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, approved the proposed $26 billion merger between T-Mobile Inc. and Sprint Corporation.
Statement of Michael Copps, Former FCC Commissioner and Common Cause Special Advisor
“We are deeply disappointed in the Court’s decision to approve the T-Mobile-Sprint merger, which will have significant consequences for consumers and competition. All of the evidence in this proceeding shows that this merger is inherently illegal under antitrust law. Even evidence presented at the trial revealed the companies’ executives acknowledged prices for wireless service would rise if the merger was approved. The Court’s decision will reduce the wireless market from four to three national carriers, undoubtedly raising prices on wireless customers. Consumers can also expect to see coordinated effects from the remaining three national wireless companies, which will result in higher prices, fewer choices, and less innovation across the board. Low-income and marginalized communities who rely on more affordable services from T-Mobile and Sprint may find themselves displaced from wireless access.
“Robust and affordable broadband and voice services are essential to a 21st century democracy. A marketplace where Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile are allowed to call of the shots will only serve to widen the digital divide. We commend the states attorneys general who brought a strong case before the Court to block this illegal deal. Our antitrust laws were designed to block blatantly anticompetitive mergers like this one. If our laws are no longer sufficient, then Congress must step in to improve them. Otherwise, we can expect to see more industry consolidation where consumers will pay the price.”