UPS Hits a Bump in the Road

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European Union regulators are still analyzing whether the purchase of TNT Express by United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS) would pose unfair competition to express delivery rivals FedEx (NYSE:FDX) and Deutsche Post’s (DPSTF.PK) DHL Worldwide Express.

UPS agreed to buy TNT last March for 5.16 billion euros ($6.66 billion), or 9.5 euros per share. The purchase would expand the company’s delivery service throughout Europe and make UPS competitive with the industry’s market-share leader, Deutsche Post’s DHL.

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At a speech in Cyprus on Tuesday, European Union Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia stressed the importance for customers to continue to have access to delivery services at competitive conditions.

“Competition control helps Europe’s economy become more competitive. Competition authorities create better conditions for economic growth – and Europe needs them more than ever,” said Almunia.

The European Commission extended the review period for the purchase in order to further assess additional information related to the transaction. UPS extended the offer period until November 9, 2012.

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