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Sprint, T-Mobile said to agree on sale price

Sprint has agreed on a price for T-Mobile USA, reports suggest. This would create a bigger third-place wireless carrier to rival Verizon and AT&T - but the biggest hurdle will be convincing regulators to play along.

Sprint is reportedly closing in on a deal to buy

T-Mobile US

for around $32 billion (23.54 billion euros) that would see Germany-based parent Deutsche Telekom maintain a 15 percent stake in the newly merged company.

Two new agencies, Bloomberg and Reuters, cited unnamed company sources on Thursday as saying Sprint had agreed to pay close to $40 a share, putting T-Mobile's total equity value somewhere between $31-32 billion.

That price was 17 percent higher than the value at which T-Mobile stock was trading by closing time on Wednesday.

The planned fusion would see the third and fourth-largest wireless carriers in the country join forces to compete with industry leaders AT&T and Verizon.

But the biggest obstacle will be convincing regulators that the fusion is in the interest of consumers.

Deutsche Telekom tried to sell T-Mobile to AT&T three years ago but the government determined there must be at least four wireless carriers in the US.

Sprint is prepared to offer 50 percent stock and 50 percent cash for the company, said Bloomberg, which first reported on the impending agreement expected sometime this summer.

cjc/uhe (Bloomberg, Reuters)

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