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The Wall Street Journal: Feds investigating major TV station owners for possible antitrust in ad sales

The Justice Department is investigating whether television station owners violated antitrust law in ways that inflated local television advertising prices, according to people familiar with the matter.

The probe has examined whether Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. SBGI, -1.48% , Tribune Media Co. TRCO, -0.85% and other independent TV station owners coordinated efforts when their ad sales teams communicated with each other about their performance, potentially leading to higher rates for TV commercials, one of the people said.

Companies like Sinclair and Tribune own dozens of local TV stations that carry programming from national broadcast networks like ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox.

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