FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          AT
WEDNESDAY, July 3, 1996                            (202) 616-2771
                                               TDD (202) 514-1888

Statement on the Surface Transportation Board's approval of the 
      Union Pacific and Southern Pacific merger

                         Anne K. Bingaman
          Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division

     "The Surface Transportation Board, a regulatory agency
created by Congress to succeed the Interstate Commerce
Commission, decided today to approve the $5.4 billion Union
Pacific and Southern Pacific railroad merger.  This merger will
create a monopoly in many markets and leave shippers throughout
the West with just two major rail competitors.  As a condition of
approval, the Surface Transportation Board has given itself a
significant regulatory oversight role for years to come in an
effort to prevent this merger from being anticompetitive."
     "We continue to believe that a competitive market structure
-- and not more regulation -- is the best way to keep prices low
in the railroad industry, as in every industry.  We are concerned
about the effect of today's decision on shippers and consumers
and will review carefully the Surface Transportation Board's
written decision when it becomes available."