LANSING (WILX) Attorney General Dana Nessel is joining the attorneys general of nine other states in an attempt to stop wireless companies T-Mobile and Sprint from merging. The federal lawsuit filed Tuesday claims the proposed merger would reduce competition and raise prices by almost 10%.
“We cannot sit idly by while two of the biggest companies in the country attempt to join forces, eliminating competition between Sprint and T-Mobile and likely raising prices by nearly 10 percent,” said Nessel. “As the eighth largest mobile wireless consumer market in the United States, we must protect Michigan residents – and every cell phone customer in the country – from a move by corporate players that will enrich their shareholders on the backs of their customers."
The $26.5 million deal would combine the country's third and fourth-largest wireless companies. T-Mobile and Sprint argue they need to merger so they can work on a faster 5G network capable of competing with Verizon and AT&T. Nessel says the lack of competition will actually slow progress towards 5G while enriching company executives.
"The executives at T-Mobile and Sprint are hell-bent on closing this deal because they themselves will personally benefit from financial incentives like stock options and compensation to close the deal."
The Justice Department has not made a decision on the proposal. The Republican majority of the FCC supports the deal. Consumer groups are concerned about price increases and job cuts. News 10 and wilx.com will keep you updated on the lawsuit.
Copyright 2019 WILX. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.