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Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Fails to Get AdTech Antitrust Suite Dismissed

Shares of Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL) slid in after-hours trading on Tuesday after the tech major suffered a setback. Bloomberg reported that a New York federal judge had ruled that an antitrust suit filed by State Attorneys General against the tech giant could move forward.

The antitrust case has been filed by 16 U.S. States plus Puerto Rico and alleges that Google has monopolized the technology underlying the online advertising market.

However, Judge P. Kevin Castel did throw out a key claim made by the States that Alphabet had entered into a secret pact with Meta Platforms (META), that would give Google an advantage when it comes to buying and selling online ads on the ad exchange.

The States have alleged in the antitrust suite that Google had manipulated the ad auctions on the exchange in such a way that it had ensured that its ad products always won.

The Bloomberg report quoted Google as stating, “As we’ve long said, advertising technology is a fiercely competitive industry — and our products increase choice for publishers, advertisers and consumers while enabling small businesses to affordably find new customers. We look forward to setting the record straight.”

This is a blow to the company’s advertising business as its ad business continues to invite rising scrutiny and ire in other countries. The company is already looking at $25.4 billion in damages in two separate suits across the U.K. and The Netherlands.

Last year, it was fined €220 million in France and an investigation in the U.K. remains ongoing.

Is Google a Good Stock to Hold?

Wall Street analysts continue to view Google favorably and remain bullish about the stock with a Strong Buy consensus rating based on 30 Buys and two Holds.

The average price target of $142.91 indicates a 37% potential upside.

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