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The attorneys general of 16 U.S. states and the District of Columbia on Friday urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to thoroughly investigate Verizon Communications Inc’s proposed $6.25 billion acquisition of pre-paid mobile phones provider Tracfone and impose conditions if it approves the deal.
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Verizon said in September it would buy Tracfone, a unit of Mexican telecom company America Movil, in a cash and stock deal.
The state attorneys general said the FCC “should examine whether the acquisition of TracFone by Verizon could significantly reduce millions of Americans’ access to affordable communications services.”
Th letter added, “it is imperative that the FCC thoroughly vet the proposed transaction and impose specific conditions that protect and ensure the public interest before considering approval.”
|VZ||VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC.||55.32||+0.20||+0.36%|
|AMOV||AMERICA MOVIL S.A.B. DE C. V.||13.48||-0.17||-1.26%|
KLOBUCHAR ANTITRUST LEGISLATION WOULD MAKE IT HARDER FOR BIG COMPANIES TO ACQUIRE SMALL ONES
The state AGs are led by Virginia’s Mark Herring and also include those of Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.
Tracfone is one of the largest providers of telecommunications services under the government subsidy program known as Lifeline with 1.7 million low-income subscribers in 43 states and the District of Columbia, the state AGs’ letter said, while Verizon offers Lifeline in parts of four states.