Jan 5, 2017

Donald Trump, trustbuster?

Bloomberg reports that Trump is opposed to the AT&T merger with Time Warner Inc. He thinks it would result in too much media consolidation, according to sources close to the president-elect.

Why it matters: The report shows that Trump's skepticism of the concentration of big business wasn't just campaign bluster. The question is—how far will he go to fight it?

Reading the tea leaves: A recent analysis by the antitrust partners at Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher suggested that Trump's picks for roles such as Attorney General and the antitrust transition team shows he'll behave more like a traditional Republican.

In other words, Trump may not like the AT&T merger, but many folks on his transition team are likely more favorable to it, and it will cost the president-elect political capital to prevent them from getting their way.

What's next: Trump still needs to name his appointees to head the Federal Trade Commission and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice —the two agencies responsible for merger review.

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