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Wrong Numbers: MCI WorldCom, Sprint, and Monopoly Power in the Long-Distance Market

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Publication Date: May 2000

Publisher(s): Economic Policy Institute

Author(s): William G. Shepherd

Topic: Media, telecommunications, and information (Telephone)

Type: Brief


AT&T, MCI WorldCom, and Sprint are the Big Three firms that dominate U.S. long-distance telephone markets. The proposed merger of MCI WorldCom (which earns about 24% of market revenues) and Sprint (about 12%) would violate not only the standards that economic research has shown are necessary for competition, but also U.S. antitrust laws. The merger would also deepen MCI WorldCom and Sprint's monopoly control over the Internet backbone market, undermining further progress in that leading technology.