In an effort to gain approval of their proposed merger from the FTC, top executives from Exxon Corporation and Mobil Corporation argued that they needed to merge because of the increasingly competitive world oil market. Falling oil prices during much of the late 1990s put a squeeze on oil industry profits. Moreover, giant state-owned oil companies pose a competitive threat because of their access to huge amounts of capital. To offset these factors, Exxon and Mobil argued that they had to combine to achieve substantial cost savings. Why were the Exxon and Mobil executives emphasizing efficiencies as a justification for this merger?

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