AT&T said its board has declared a quarterly dividend of 49 cents a share, consistent with previous levels. The dividend is payable on November 1 to stockholders of record at the close of business on October 10.
Media watchers have the telecom giant in their sights as the final approvals of its $85 billion takeover of Time Warner are expected in the coming months. Shares in AT&T neared today’s closing bell fairly flat for the session at about $39 a share, having inched up a dollar over the past month.
Execs at AT&T and Time Warner have reported getting the thumbs-up from more than a dozen international regulatory bodies, saying earlier this month that only Brazil and the U.S. remain. Especially given the climate in Washington, which has become much more hospitable to corporate interests during the Trump Era, approval from the FCC and other key bodies is fairly certain.
Reports surfaced over the summer that the Department of Justice had begun talking with the companies about proactive steps it could take to make the process move more smoothly. While the deal is considered a “vertical” merger, meaning the two companies do not directly compete across the majority of their operations, the notion of the newly combined company favoring Time Warner content on AT&T’s DirecTV is a sticking point.
In order to put to rest those concerns, AT&T has vowed “good behavior” and could agree to certain stipulations and restrictions as to how it handles its own content pool, which will grow dramatically deeper once Turner, HBO and Warner Bros are added.
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