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Shelly Banjo

Forget That Staples-Office Depot Deal

All the time in the world won't be enough to convince the FTC.

Staples and Office Depot on Wednesday said their boards voted to extend a deadline to approve a merger pact that has so far been thwarted by U.S. antitrust regulators. Investors shouldn't hold their breath for a deal to go through -- all the three-month postponement amounts to is a bunch of wishful thinking. 

Sure, extending the deadline will give the office supply chains time to fight the Federal Trade Commission's lawsuit to block the transaction and go through a trial set to begin March 21. But it's a matter of going through the motions, so to speak, for management -- many of whom stand to come out on the losing end of any tie-up.