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Justice Department confirms antitrust probe of Comcast-TWC deal

2014-03-07 09:35 by
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The Justice Department announced on Thursday that its antitrust division will review Comcast's $45 billion purchase of Time Warner Cable. The investigation will be overseen by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Renata Hesse and Deputy Assistant Attorney General David Gelfand.

Comcast, the nation's largest cable company and its biggest broadband provider, is expected later this month to file documents with the F.C.C. and the Justice Department seeking approval of its takeover of Time Warner Cable, which is the second-largest provider.

Thursday's announcement means that the Federal Communications Commission will be working with the Department of Justice on the review, as the two agencies did on Comcast's deal for NBC Universal. The Justice Department reviews antitrust implications of a deal. The FCC reviews public interest implications.

Analysts have said regulators would carefully scrutinize the deal, not only due to the creation of a dominant cable television operator but because of Comcast's ownership of one of the major television networks and Hollywood studios. However, the companies said the deal would save $1.5 billion in operating costs and help facilitate the deployment of new technologies for video and Internet.

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