Comcast maintain that its proposed deal with NBC Universal will result in $290 million worth of consumer benefits, not the $2.4 billion cost to consumers alleged in a study commissioned by the American Cable Association.
That came in Comcast's response Monday at the Federal Communications Commission to the ACA study by former commssion economist William Rogerson
Calling the Rogerson study misleading, Comcast, via its own researchers, Mark Israel and Michael Katz, demonstrated the $290 million savings and that Rogerson's analysis "should be given no weight."
Israel and Katrz argued that Rogerson understates the deal's cost savings, ignores data and provides no basis for the conditions ACA is proposing on the deal.
Israel and Katz said that Rogerson provides no credible evidence of any horizontal competitive harms, that the pricing models he uses are unsubstantiated, that some of his cost-savings claims are "false and misleading," and that even using Rogerson's methods of computing net consumer benefit, the result would be $290 million in the plus column.
Comcast's filing was just the latest volley in what has been a series of papers from both sides filed at the FCC and taking aim at their respective calculations of merger impacts.
Responding to Comcast's reply to its study, ACA President Matthew Polka said Tuesday in a statement: "After almost a year of first producing and then revising its economic arguments to justify government approval of this transaction, Comcast is surprising no one by again revising its arguments for why this deal is not harmful to the American consumer."
The FCC and Justice are widely believed to be winding down their review of the deal.
Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.
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