This is how you know a bad merger is completely screwed: when the people involved attempt to cover up a major setback by doing it over Thanksgiving. Good thing we’re here to point and laugh!
AT&T has withdrawn their bid to merge with T-Mobile from the FCC. They insist that it’s only temporary; they just want to get a few minor setbacks out of the way first, like dealing with the Department of Justice breathing down their necks, and the distinct possibility that AT&T is going to get hauled into court. Then they’ll refile their bid. Honest.
The fact that by withdrawing their bid, the FCC will not go public with any findings they may happen to have about this merger limiting consumer choice and creating a de-facto monopoly is, needless to say, a complete and total coinkydink and nobody should think for a moment AT&T is terrified of the Department of Justice getting that information. Nor should they think that AT&T just so happening to pay Deutsche Telekom, the owners of T-Mobile, $4 billion, which happens to be the exact amount they’ll pay if the merger goes south as a “break-up fee,” is anything other than standard accounting. The merger is not dead in the water at all! Really!