Sprint, T-Mobile Jump As FCC Signals Merger Approval

Sprint shares are up over 25% and T-Mobile up around 5% in the pre-market after the U.S. Federal Communications Commission chairman said he will recommend approval of T-Mobile US’s proposed takeover of Sprint, a key step for the deal’s completion.

“In light of the significant commitments made by T-Mobile and Sprint as well as the facts in the record to date, I believe that this transaction is in the public interest and intend to recommend to my colleagues that the FCC approve it,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says in statement.

Bloomberg reports that the companies made commitments including asset sales and rural-service guarantees.

The promises include the sale of one of their prepaid brands, a three-year buildout of their 5G network, and a reiterated pledge not to raise prices while the network is being constructed. The new pledges follow talks with the FCC.

“Two of the FCC’s top priorities are closing the digital divide in rural America and advancing United States leadership in 5G, the next generation of wireless connectivity,” Pai said in a statement Monday.

“The commitments made today by T-Mobile and Sprint would substantially advance each of these critical objectives.”

A separate antitrust review by the Justice Department is still underway.

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