YOU ARE AT:Archived ArticlesNEW YORK SPSC APPROVES BELL ATLANTIC/NYNEX MERGER

NEW YORK SPSC APPROVES BELL ATLANTIC/NYNEX MERGER

NEW YORK-The New York State Public Service Commission approved March 20 the merger of Nynex Corp. and Bell Atlantic Corp.

As a condition, state regulators required Nynex to spend $500 million to improve its telephone network and to hire several hundred new employees to improve its poor customer service. But the Commission didn’t mandate any reductions in rates, something for which consumer groups had lobbied.

“With the qualified approval of the NYSPSC, a significant hurdle has been cleared, and the proposed merger … is now closer to being realized,” said Moody’s Investors Service Inc., New York. “However, the U.S. Department of Justice continues its review and has raised several complex issues that could, at the least, further delay the closing of the transaction. FCC approval of the merger also is pending.”

Moody’s has placed Bell Atlantic’s long-term debt ratings on review for possible downgrade, and Nynex’ long-term debt ratings on review for possible upgrade.

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