Much attention has been given to the pending merger between American Airlines and US Airways. Earlier this month, the Department of Justice (DOJ) moved to block the merger by filing an antitrust suit, arguing that the merger will hit consumers and business travelers with higher fares and fees and less competition. The DOJ claims the deal would hurt consumers and damage competition because it would leave only four airlines controlling more than 80% of the U.S. travel market.
The DOJ’s move to block the merger was a surprise to many industry insiders, as the Department had already previously approved two mega mergers–Delta and Northwest, and Continental and United–which created more route overlaps and resulted in flight reductions and higher airfares in certain markets. Both American and U.S. Airways management plan to fight the antitrust lawsuit aimed at blocking the proposed merger and are seeking a trial that would begin November 12 in U.S. federal court to fight the challenge.