Should/would/could Verizon buy Qwest?

The instability of the economy gives us license to play some fun and interesting "What if..." games, and Wall Street 24/7 has done just that with a series of suggestions for corporate buyouts that could result from these recessive times (recession? The Dow and Nasdaq are surging, existing home sales are up!).

The big telecom mention on the list is where the site says Verizon Communications could acquire Qwest Communications. The case seems to have more to do with the size and value discrepancy between the two companies than anything else. The site also suggested that buying Qwest could give Verizon more potential customers to sell bundles to, and new frontiers for fiber-to-the-home. This isn't the first time someone has suggested such a pairing. Industry observers have played "What if..." with Verizon and Qwest virtually since Qwest began struggling--and that was a long time ago.

Still, past critics of those past observations also have noted extreme differences in market density and customer profiles between the two telcos. Also, Qwest continues to rule out offering residential video and hasn't had much luck with mobile, two hallmarks of Verizon's recent success. Could Verizon change any of that, and would it even want to try? Well, it's fun to speculate, right?

For more:
- read this post at Wall Street 24/7

- Verizon and Qwest reportedly have discussed a wireless resale partnership