American Airlines-US Airways Merger Is A Go

A federal court approved a settlement between the Justice Dept., American Airlines and US Airways, clearing the path for the airlines to merge.

American Airlines-US Airways Merger Is A Go
Bloomberg / Andrew Harrer

A judge cleared the path Wednesday for the American Airlines and US Airways merger, which will result in the world's largest airline. 

A federal court approved an antitrust settlement between the Justice Department and the two airlines. The marriage between the two companies will also pull American out of bankruptcy. (Via CNN)

The Justice Department initially sued the two airlines this year, claiming the deal would jack-up prices for fliers and reduce competition in the market. (Via Forbes)

Businessweek reports, "​To resolve regulators’ concerns ... American and US Airways agreed to divest 52 pairs of takeoff and landing slots [at Washington's Reagan National Airport]. The combined carrier will also give up 34 slots at New York’s LaGuardia Airport and make smaller concessions at five other airports."

Regulators and the airlines settled the suit Nov. 12, but the final approval came Wednesday for the companies to move forward. 

American Airlines has fallen behind rivals Delta Air Lines and United Airlines in recent years. American execs filed for bankruptcy in 2011 then announced plans to merge with US Airways in February.

The New York Times reports the merged airline will have almost 7,000 daily flights, 1,500 planes and 100,000 employees. But with the most recent hurdle cleared, the Times reports the two companies have another one to get over: customer-friendly service. 

"​Airline mergers are usually bumpy events, often marred by reservation problems and computer glitches. United, for example, suffered repeated flight delays and disruptions last year because of problems associated with its merger with Continental Airlines."

The merged company will keep the name American Airlines. The companies expects the merger to close Dec. 9.