NSA spy scandal hurts AT&T’s plans for Europe

There has been a lot of speculation over whether recent disclosures about America’s extensive spy programs will harm the country’s economic interests. Now, in one of the first concrete examples of economic fall-out, the Wall Street Journal reports that AT&T’s(s t) plans to make a bid for Vodafone have been set back indefinitely over growing European anger over the US telephone company’s role in collecting information.

Recent leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden suggest that both AT&T and Verizon(s vz), which has also been mulling a bid for Vodafone, have participated in an ongoing US program to collect and record call data in the U.S and abroad. New disclosures that the U.S. tapped the personal cell phone of the German Chancellor have added new fuel to the controversy.