CHICAGO — A federal bankruptcy court judge did not rule during a Thursday hearing on American Airlines’ confirmation plan, but indicated he was leaning towards such a move even though the airline faces a federal antitrust lawsuit blocking its merger with US Airways Group.

Judge Sean H. Lane, who serves in the federal bankruptcy court in Manhattan, was quoted in numerous published reports as saying he had found “the arguments in favor of confirmation fairly persuasive.” American, its creditors’ committees, and the carrier’s unions have argued in favor of approving the confirmation plan on a conditional basis with the DOJ lawsuit pending. Lawyers involved in a private antitrust lawsuit filed against the merger argued that the confirmation plan should be put on hold until the antitrust issues are resolved.

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