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White: AT&T Deal Unlocks Potential

DirecTV CEO Mike White said his company’s pending merger with AT&T will unlock tremendous growth potential for the satellite giant, even as investors sent shares of both participants southward amid doubts about the benefits of the merger.

Shares of both companies were down about 2% in early trading Monday – DirecTV was priced at $84.34 each (down $1.84) while AT&T logged in at $35.90 each (down 84 cents). The stocks have since improved slightly – AT&T shares were down 1.4% (50 cents) to $36.24 by the afternoon, while DirecTV shares were down 1.2% ($1.03 each) to $85.15 per share.

While the declines were small, they are in sharp contrast to what usually happens to the seller in such mega-deals – in contrast, Time Warner Cable stock was up 7% on the day it announced its $69 billion deal with Comcast – and could point to concerns investors have about the deal outside of potential hurdles to regulatory approval.

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