A bankruptcy judge in New York has endorsed a plan to merge American Airlines and US Airways, pending the outcome of a legal challenge by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Judge Sean Lane approved the merger plan Thursday at a hearing in U.S. bankruptcy court. AMR Corp., the parent company of American Airlines, filed for bankruptcy in November 2011.
But the merger that would create the nation's largest carrier must still overcome a lawsuit filed last month by the Justice Department, which claims the merger would cut competition and lead to higher fares.
Lane has been reluctant to approve the merger plan because it could change significantly as a result of the Justice Department's lawsuit. But on Thursday he said his job was to consider the feasibility of the plan regardless of the lawsuit.