Five states, NY, CA, MA, PA and MD, joined in an investigation of the proposed acquisition of The May Department Stores Company by Federated Department Stores, Inc. The merger involved the two largest operators of “conventional department stores.” In some markets, these companies were the only operators of such stores. After an investigation which involved interviewing competitors, vendors, mall developers and reviewing the party’s documents, some states in the working group concluded that this merger could result in consumers paying higher prices in malls where the companies competed and where they had no other conventional department store competitors. The states of California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York and Pennsylvania reached an agreement that certain stores within those states would be sold to certain other identified conventional department stores as long as Federated received a commercially reasonable bid from a conventional department store. The FTC closed its investigation into this matter without any action. The merger closed on August 31, 2005.