Judge Richard Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia said at a hearing that he has found, after a six-week trial, that the deal does not violate antitrust law and can proceed.
The decision means the telecom giant will now control highly sought after programming - including Game of Thrones, the Harry Potter movie franchise, and CNN - as well as the infrastructure that delivers that content to tens of millions of living rooms televisions and smartphones.
The merger's approval was a stinging defeat for the Justice Department, which could move to appeal Leon's ruling.
"This decision from Judge Leon will have broad ramifications for the tech, telecommunications and media sector for decades to come", said Daniel Ives, the chief strategy officer at GBH Insights.
And the AT&T-Time Warner deal is not necessarily yet in the clear.
But AT&T rejected that idea, stating in a court filing that, "Divestitures here would destroy the very consumer value this merger is created to unlock". He took issue with the government's analysis that the merger would result in higher prices for consumers, telling a packed courtroom that the findings "rested on improper notions". Leon rejected the government's position, which could lead to a flurry of entertainment mergers. But, he added, "the government's evidence is too thin a reed for this court to rely on". His 172-page decision delivered a stinging defeat to Trump administration's Justice Department while opening the door for Comcast Corp.to bid for parts of 21st Century Fox and become an global company.
A vertical merger is when two companies who provide different or complementary offerings join forces, giving consumers access to a more comprehensive set of services, at a lower price, while still generating profits. AT&T has been the nation's largest pay-TV company since it acquired DirecTV in 2015, and is one of the largest providers of home and mobile broadband service. It claims about 25 million of the 90 million or so USA households that are pay-TV customers.
AT&T and Time Warnerannounced their deal on October 22, 2016, in the midst of the bitterly contested presidential campaign between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Major cable, satellite and phone companies are bulking up with purchases of entertainment conglomerates to compete against rivals born on the internet, like Amazon and Google.
The biggest impact of this deal will be felt quickly, as Comcast will now formally make an offer to Fox for the majority of its assets.
Still, at least one company, Comcast, the largest USA cable provider, had been waiting for the court decision before making any large M&A moves in media, sources have said.
"AT&T is buying Time Warner, and thus CNN", Trump said at a campaign rally in 2016. Leon sided with the telecom.
Shares of AT&T were about flat in after-hours trade following the decision, while Time Warner rose more than 5 percent.
"This deal will accelerate content and streaming initiatives between Time Warner properties and AT&T and be a major shot across the bow to other cable and wireless players with all these assets under one hood", he said. Post-merger, AT&T rivals like Charter Communications and Cox, which now pay Time Warner for its channels, would suddenly also become AT&T's customers.
The president has accused Canada of taking advantage of American workers through their trade practices. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., accused Trudeau of endangering the economies of both the USA and Canada.
Modi also said that an "Asia of rivalry" will hold the region back while an Asia of cooperation will shape the current century. The two leaders agreed to maintain strategic communications and meet on the sidelines of worldwide meetings.
In response, the European Union is preparing new tariffs set to hit United States exports ranging from jeans to bourbon whiskey. But despite the rows over trade and Russia , Mr Trump rated his relationship with other G7 leaders as 10 out of 10.
The STATES Act would give states the right to self-determine cannabis laws without the looming threat of federal interference. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, an outspoken advocate for legalization, has said the drug will be legal by summer.
They could also be an effort by Mueller to induce a guilty plea and secure the testimony of a critical campaign adviser to Trump. Kilimnik, a Russian intelligence asset, is now under the protection of Moscow and unlikely to ever see an American court room.
Bethesda also shared that a beta , or Break-it Early Test Application, will be available in a Fallout 76 Power Armor Edition. Players won't see a server list when they boot up the game, but their progression will be saved nonetheless.
The UK aims to leave the single market and the customs union , without returning to a hard border on the island of Ireland. And he questioned whether Mrs May's proposals would deliver an "all-weather backstop" fit for all circumstances.
Mr Nyantakyi has not replied to multiple requests for comment while the GFA has said it would cooperate with any investigation. Ministers and Deputy Ministers of State for indiscretion in associating them with the private conversations on the video.
Plus, for a limited time, customers can pre-order Fire TV Cube and Amazon Cloud Cam together for $199.98 - a $40 savings. Then imagine that control plugged into your TV so you can control everything plugged in there with your voice as well.
He demanded a Justice Department inquiry of the matter and dubbed the matter " SPYGATE " in repeated posts on Twitter. The committee would not comment on the investigation Thursday. "If he did, he'd be impeached so fast", Giuliani said.
Guardiola responds to Toure's allegations
He'll never admit it [not liking Africans]. "I was at a fantastic age in which I was taking on the world. Speaking to TV3 (h/t Fay), the City boss denied the suggestions made by the Ivory Coast global .
'One-time shot' for peace with North Korea
The bodyguards were glimpsed flanking Kim's Mercedes-Benz limousine as it traveled to the St. But some U.S. officials have questioned whether Trump was doing enough to get up to speed.
UFC 225 Embedded: Yoel Romero Puts Headlining Bout at Risk
The generation gap is hard to ignore in the heavyweight matchup between Tai Tuivasa (-250) and Andrei Arlovski (+210). Romero continued to walk forward, and a leaping left hand landed clean and sent Whittaker crashing to the floor.