US retailer A&P has revealed the earliest date on which it could finally seal its planned acquisition of regional supermarket chain Pathmark.

A&P said that following talks with the Federal Trade Commission, the US competition watchdog, both retailers have agreed not to finalise the US$1.3bn deal until 25 September at the earliest.

The FTC is investigating the effects the proposed takeover could have on competition on the US grocery sector. The probe is ongoing and A&P and Pathmark are “continuing to cooperate” with the watchdog.

A&P, majority owned by German conglomerate The Tengelmann Group, runs 337 stores across eight states.

Pathmark operates 141 outlets in the New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia metropolitan areas.