A judge in the US has granted a request from regulatory authorities to temporarily block Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard for $69 billion, as reported by BBC and others.

The court states that the temporary block is “necessary to maintain the status quo while the complaint is pending.”

The US competition authority, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), argues that the deal could “substantially lessen competition” in the sector.

The FTC states that without a block, the deal could be completed as early as the end of the week, even though the UK previously blocked the acquisition in April. Meanwhile, the EU has approved the acquisition.

Judge in the US temporarily blocks Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard

Microsoft and Activision now have until June 16 to submit legal arguments opposing a preliminary injunction, and the FTC, which enforces competition law in the US, will need to respond by June 20.

A two-day hearing will take place on June 22 in San Francisco.

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