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The Boston Globe

Business

Regulators approve NStar merger with Northeast Utilities

After an almost year-and-a-half of review, Massachusetts regulators today approved a nearly $20 billion merger between Boston’s NStar and Northeast Utilities of Connecticut — a combination that will create New England’s largest utility, and would likely give the new company more influence over regional energy and environmental policies.

Shareholders have already approved the deal, and the state’s regulatory consent was the last hurdle the companies needed to clear before combining. It follows several major concessions the utilities made in March in exchange for support from state energy officials and Attorney General Martha Coakley that include a four-year rate freeze that will save consumers nearly $200 million, and buying power from the offshore Cape Wind project.

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