The Archives

Everything written by Daniel J. Gilman on law, economics, and more

Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Spring Has Sprung

Last week was the occasion of the “spring meeting”; that is, the big annual antitrust convention in Washington, D.C. hosted by the American Bar Association (ABA) Antitrust Section. To engage in a bit of self-plagiarism (efficient for me, at least), I had this to say about it last year: For those outside the antitrust world, ... Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Spring Has Sprung

Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: The Supply Chain, Part Deux

But First, Money Makes the World Go ‘Round For all my carping about this or that program or enforcement matter, it seems to me a very good thing that Congress passed—and President Joe Biden signed into law—the spending package that will keep much of the federal government up and running for Fiscal Year 2024 (see ... Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: The Supply Chain, Part Deux

Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Supply Chains, Noncompetes, and Greedflation

The big news from the agencies may be the lawsuit filed today by the U.S. Justice Department (DOJ) and 16 states against Apple alleging monopoly maintenance in violation of Section 2 of the Sherman Act. It’s an 86-page complaint and it’s just out. I’ll write more about it next week. Two quick observations: First, the ... Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Supply Chains, Noncompetes, and Greedflation

The CFPB’s Misleading Slant on Competition in Credit-Card Markets

In yet another example of interagency cheerleading from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Chair Lina Khan recently touted the work of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on payments networks: New @CFPB research reveals that large banks are offering worse credit card terms & interest rates than small banks and credit unions, regardless of credit ... The CFPB’s Misleading Slant on Competition in Credit-Card Markets

The Whole Wide World of Government

First, a bit of self-promotion: the International Center for Law & Economics (ICLE) hosted an excellent panel discussion Feb. 26 on the 2023 merger guidelines. I moderated, but the real attractions were the panelists: Maureen Ohlhausen, Noah Phillips, Bruce Kobayashi, Diana Moss, and Kristen Limarzi. The room was packed, as it should have been. Video ... The Whole Wide World of Government

March-Right-on-In Rights?

The National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) published a request for information (RFI) in December 2023 on its “Draft Interagency Guidance Framework for Considering the Exercise of March-In Rights.” It’s quite something, if not in a good way. March-In Rights Provide Very Limited Exceptions to Intellectual-Property Rights What are “march-in” rights? In brief, they ... March-Right-on-In Rights?

What Do We Do with Presumptions in Antitrust?

Winter was coming, as it does. We knew the agencies were going to issue new merger guidelines, and then they did. On Dec. 18, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and U.S. Justice Department (DOJ) jointly issued merger guidelines, supplanting 2023’s draft guidelines, the 2010 Horizontal Merger Guidelines, and the 2020 (partially withdrawn) Vertical Merger ... What Do We Do with Presumptions in Antitrust?

Four Problems with the Supreme Court’s Refusal To Hear the Epic v Apple Dispute

The U.S. Supreme Court this week rejected both parties’ petitions for certiorari in appeals of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals’ Epic Games v Apple decision. Many observers—including Epic CEO Tim Sweeney—have marked this as an unmitigated loss for Epic.  That’s partly right. The district court had correctly rejected Epic’s federal antitrust claims against ... Four Problems with the Supreme Court’s Refusal To Hear the Epic v Apple Dispute

The Conundrum of Out-of-Market Effects in Merger Enforcement

Section 7 of the Clayton Act prohibits mergers that harm competition in “in any line” of commerce. And, indeed, the Supreme Court’s decisions in Philadelphia National Bank and Topco are often cited on behalf of the proposition that this means any single cognizable market, and that anticompetitive effects in one market cannot be offset by ... The Conundrum of Out-of-Market Effects in Merger Enforcement

Hands Across the Agencies

In the headline to a Dec. 7 press release, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it, in concert with the U.S. Justice Department (DOJ) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), had managed to “Lower Health Care and Drug Costs, Promote Competition to Benefit Patients, Health Care Workers.” According to the subhead: ... Hands Across the Agencies

Google, Amazon, Switching Costs, and Red Herrings

Way back in May, I cracked wise about the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) fictional “Bureau of Let’s Sue Meta,” noting that the commission’s proposal (really, an “order to show cause”) to modify its 2020 settlement of a consumer-protection matter with what had then been Facebook—in other words, a settlement modifying a 2012 settlement—was the FTC’s ... Google, Amazon, Switching Costs, and Red Herrings

Net Neutrality and Broken Records

I don’t mean to sound like a broken record, but why is the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) playing a broken record? I’ve been writing a fair bit about Federal Trade Commission (FTC) rulemaking initiatives. On the theory that you deserve a nominal break from all of that, this post is mostly about the FCC. On ... Net Neutrality and Broken Records