Analysts at an influential financial counseling firm say there were few surprises in petitions filed on Tuesday at the Federal Communications Commission asking the agency to block AT&T's proposed takeover of T-Mobile.
"The opposition filings largely amplify arguments that were previewed in the press and congressional testimony, with an emphasis on arguing that the merger would create a tipping point for a wireless duopoly and challenging AT&T's core claim that they need to acquire T-Mobile in order to resolve capacity constraints," researchers for Baltimore-based Stifel, Nicolaus & Company wrote in an analysis released Wednesday.
The firm identified a series of demands made by critics of the merger, including a need for spectrum divestitures, regulation of wireless roaming, special access, and handset access.
Officials at AT&T are delighted that a wide range of groups have come out in support of the $39 billion deal. Among the supporters are labor and education groups; advocates for minorities and people with disabilities; a string of state governors; companies like Microsoft and Corning; and the Sierra Club.
Stifel Nicolaus cautioned that the most influential parties may be responding confidentially to the Department of Justice.