Judge allows United-Continental deal to proceed

SAN FRANCISCO, CA Forty-nine travelers had sued in San Francisco, claiming the deal would raise fares. They asked Judge Richard Seeborg to stop the deal from closing until a jury can hear their claims.

The judge's ruling said the travelers have not shown that they personally would be harmed enough to stop the deal from moving forward. Seeborg wrote on Monday that none of the plaintiffs testified to having flown regularly, and that only one said that she is likely to use United or Continental when she does fly.

The Justice Department has already said it has no antitrust objections to the deal.

United spokeswoman Jean Medina said the airline is pleased with the judge's decision.

Shares of UAL Corp., United's Chicago-based parent, rose 4 cents to $22.88 in afternoon trading. Houston-based Continental Airlines Inc. fell 9 cents to $24.02.

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