Diane's Feed
Jul 22, 2015

U.S. senator urges probe of Apple’s music streaming practices

WASHINGTON, July 22 (Reuters) – A U.S. senator wants two
federal agencies to investigate whether Apple Inc is
breaking antitrust law in how it treats music services that
compete with the streaming service it launched in June.

Democratic Senator Al Franken in a letter on Wednesday said
that he was concerned that some Apple practices could limit
choices and raise prices for consumers. The letter was sent to
Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Federal Trade Commission
Chairwoman Edith Ramirez.

Jul 22, 2015

US antitrust worries weigh on Halliburton-Baker Hughes deal -source

By Diane Bartz and Sneha Banerjee

(Reuters) – Oilfield services provider Halliburton Co’s
acquisition of smaller rival Baker Hughes Inc
faces concerns from U.S. antitrust enforcers who believe the $35
billion merger will lead to higher prices and less innovation,
according to a source close to the probe.

A second source, who is also close to the probe, said the
investigation into the proposed tie-up of the No. 2 and No. 3
oilfield services companies was far from complete and could well
end with targeted divestitures to resolve the Justice
Department’s concerns.

Jul 14, 2015

Reported Chinese offer for Micron faces far too many hurdles

WASHINGTON/SAN FRANCISCO July 14 (Reuters) – A Chinese
state-backed company’s plan to buy U.S. chip maker Micron
Technology faces no shortage of obstacles – questions
about the price, worries on Capitol Hill, an aggressive
regulator – and any one of them could torpedo the deal.

Analysts argued Tsinghua Unigroup Ltd’s proposed price, $23
billion, was far too low. But China’s critics on Capitol Hill
worried about the impact on the Defense Department. And any deal
would likely face a close look by the agency charged with
vetting transactions that have potential national security

Jul 11, 2015

FTC exploring Apple rules for streaming music rivals in App Store

WASHINGTON/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – U.S. government antitrust regulators are looking into claims about whether Apple’s treatment of rival streaming music apps is illegal under antitrust law, according to three industry sources.

Apple recently launched a new music streaming service, Apple Music. It also provides the App Store platform for competing streaming services including Jango, Spotify, Rhapsody and others.

Jul 2, 2015

FTC approves Dollar Tree’s takeover of Family Dollar

By Diane Bartz and Yashaswini Swamynathan

(Reuters) – Dollar Tree Inc was given the go-ahead
to buy Family Dollar Stores Inc by the U.S. Federal
Trade Commission on condition that they sell 330 Family Dollar
stores, putting to rest a year-long merger saga.

Dollar Tree said it expects the deal to close on Monday.

The stores spread across 35 states, which Dollar Tree has
offered to sell to private equity firm Sycamore Partners, has to
be sold within 150 days after the deal closes, the agency said.

Jul 2, 2015

Airlines’ undisciplined talk may have led to antitrust probe: experts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Frequent assurances by U.S. airline executives that they would maintain “discipline” when adding seats on competitive routes were a red flag for antitrust regulators on alert for collusion between the four largest air carriers, antitrust experts said Thursday.

The U.S. Justice Department disclosed Wednesday that it has demanded details from the airlines about their communications on capacity with analysts, investors, the public and each other.

Jul 1, 2015

U.S. probing whether airlines collude to keep airfares high

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. Department of
Justice said on Wednesday it is investigating whether U.S.
airlines worked together illegally to keep airfares high by
signaling plans to limit flights.

The Justice Department wrote to major U.S. air carriers
demanding that they detail decisions to limit the number of
seats they offer, and what they’ve said about those plans to
investors, securities analysts and the public.

Jul 1, 2015

U.S. sues to stop Electrolux acquiring GE’s appliance business

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States filed a lawsuit on
Wednesday to stop Sweden’s Electrolux AB, which owns
the Frigidaire and Tappan brands, from buying General Electric
Co’s appliance business, the Justice Department said in a

It said the $3.3 billion deal would hurt competition, and
consumers, by combining two of the three top makers of stoves,
cooktops and ovens. Whirlpool Corp is the third.

Jun 30, 2015

U.S. approval of AT&T-DirecTV deal expected as soon as next week -sources

WASHINGTON, June 30 (Reuters) – AT&T Inc’s proposed
$48.5 billion acquisition of DirecTV is expected to get
U.S. regulatory approval as soon as next week, according to
people familiar with the matter, a decision that will combine
the country’s No. 2 wireless carrier with the largest
satellite-TV provider.

The Department of Justice, which assesses whether deals
violate antitrust law, has completed its review of the merger
and is waiting on the Federal Communications Commission to wrap
up its own, according to three people familiar with the matter.

Jun 29, 2015

Food distributor Sysco drops plan to merge with US Foods

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Sysco Corp (SYY.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the biggest U.S. food distribution company, has scrapped a controversial plan to merge with US Foods[USFOO.UL], its biggest rival, the company announced on Monday.

Cancellation of the deal means that Sysco will be required to pay a $300 million break-up fee to US Foods and another $12.5 million to another company, which had agreed to buy 11 facilities that Sysco hoped to sell in order to satisfy U.S. antitrust regulators.