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March 27, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

A report by Bloomberg News on Wednesday that DISH Network Chairman Charlie Ergen recently contacted DirecTV chief Mike White about the possibility of merging the two satellite TV companies caused shares of both of them to leap. DISH was up 6.3 percent; DirecTV’s 5.7 percent. In a note to clients, however, media analyst Craig Moffett observed that while a merger of the two companies presented the possibility of “staggeringly large” synergy, the odds that it would receive regulatory approval “must be deemed relatively low.” The Los Angeles Times noted today (Thursday) that DISH and DirecTV tried to merge in 2002 but could not overcome regulatory hurdles. Bloomberg, however, quoted an unnamed source as saying that the key to regulatory approval rests with the way regulators view competition in the overall market and whether online services such as Netflix also enter the picture. At the close of trading on Thursday, shares of DISH were down 1 percent, while those of DirecTV were down .4 percent.