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FCC Using Outside Economist to Vet T-Mobile-Sprint

The FCC has been using an outside economist to join the team reviewing the T-Mobile-Sprint merger proposal. T-Mobile and Sprint filed the proposed deal with the FCC June 18.

FCC chair Ajit Pai said Thursday (Oct. 11) that professor David Sibley, the John Michael Stuart Centennial Professor of Economics at the University of Texas, Austin, has been advising the merger team. Sibley is a former economist at Bell Labs, and was deputy assistant Attorney General for Economic Analysis in the Justice Department's Antitrust division. He has also consulted on merger cases with DOJ and the Federal Trade Commission, which divide up merger reviews.

Related: Lawrence to Head T-Mobile-Sprint Merger Team

Back in April, Sprint and T-Mobile agreed to an all-stock merger that valued the combined company at $146 billion (including debt). The companies were billing it as a stronger number three to Verizon and AT&T, rather than as a contraction of the top four to the top three.