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DirecTV shareholders approve $48.5B acquisition by AT&T, regulatory review still ongoing

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NEW YORK — AT&T's proposed $48.5 billion acquisition of DirecTV is moving forward as shareholders of the country's largest satellite TV broadcaster approved the deal. But it still needs regulatory approval.

Public-interest groups say the deal would lead to less competition, since AT&T and DirecTV provide pay-TV services to about 25 percent of the country. AT&T has about 5.7 million subscribers to its pay-TV services. DirecTV has 20 million subscribers.

AT&T wants to acquire DirecTV is to gain access to programming at lower rates.

The board of El Segundo, California-based DirecTV agreed to the deal in May. More than 99 percent of votes cast favored the deal. That represented 77 percent of all outstanding shares. The deal needs approval by the Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission.

DirecTV expects the deal to close by the first half of 2015.

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