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The collection of all scholarly commentary on law, economics, and more

Showing archive for:  “FTC Act”

The FTC Should Not Enact a Deceptive or Unfair Marketing Earnings-Claims Rule

Back in February 2022, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) on “deceptive or unfair earnings claims.” According to the FTC: [The Deceptive or Unfair ANPRM was aimed at] challenging bogus money-making claims used to lure consumers, workers, and prospective entrepreneurs into risky business ventures that often turn into ... The FTC Should Not Enact a Deceptive or Unfair Marketing Earnings-Claims Rule

A Consumer-Welfare-Centric Reform Agenda for the Federal Trade Commission

As we approach a presidential election year, it is time to begin developing a  comprehensive reform agenda for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). In that spirit, this post proposes 12 reforms that could be implemented by new leadership, either through unilateral action by a new chair or (in some cases) majority votes of the commission. ... A Consumer-Welfare-Centric Reform Agenda for the Federal Trade Commission

Where Are the New FTC Rules?

Perhaps more than at any time in its history, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) under Chair Lina Khan has highlighted substantive rulemaking as a central element of its policy agenda. But despite a great deal of rule-related sound and fury (signifying nothing?), new final rules have yet to emerge, and do not appear imminent. This ... Where Are the New FTC Rules?

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

The Biden Executive Order on AI: A Recipe for Anticompetitive Overregulation

The Biden administration’s Oct. 30 “Executive Order on the Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence” proposes to “govern… the development and use of AI safely and responsibly” by “advancing a coordinated, Federal Government-wide approach to doing so.” (Emphasis added.) This “all-of-government approach,” which echoes the all-of-government approach of the 2021 “Executive ... The Biden Executive Order on AI: A Recipe for Anticompetitive Overregulation

Abby Normal, a Flood of Ill-Considered Withdrawals, and the FTC’s Theatre of Listening

What will become of our culture if we forget the classics? Two bits seem salient here, would that either were my own. Dr. Frankenstein: Now, that brain you gave me. Was it Hans Delbruck’s? Igor: … [pause] … No. Dr. Frankenstein: Ah! Very good. Would you mind telling me whose brain I did put in? ... Abby Normal, a Flood of Ill-Considered Withdrawals, and the FTC’s Theatre of Listening

Regulatory Humility or Regulatory Hubris at the Federal Trade Commission?

Competition policy at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will naturally ebb and flow, depending on its leadership. Over the years, some commissions have taken a more aggressive approach, while others have granted greater credibility to market forces. Still, regardless of the party in power, the agency was generally able to maintain a solid reputation as ... Regulatory Humility or Regulatory Hubris at the Federal Trade Commission?

The FTC Tacks Into the Gale, Battening No Hatches: Part 1

The Evolution of FTC Antitrust Enforcement – Highlights of Its Origins and Major Trends 1910-1914 – Creation and Launch The election of 1912, which led to the creation of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), occurred at the apex of the Progressive Era. Since antebellum times, Grover Cleveland had been the only Democrat elected as president. ... The FTC Tacks Into the Gale, Battening No Hatches: Part 1

The FTC Lacks Authority for Competition Rulemaking

Before becoming chair of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Lina Khan advocated the use of rulemakings to implement the prohibition on unfair methods of competition (UMC) in Section 5 of the FTC Act. As chair, she proposed a rule, which likely will be finalized in the spring, to ban noncompete clauses in employment contracts. But ... The FTC Lacks Authority for Competition Rulemaking

The FTC Shouldn’t Try to Make Amazon Divest Its Logistics Service

Bloomberg reports that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) plans a suit against Amazon to force the divestiture of the company’s logistics service. The suit, if correctly described, would try and do through litigation what could not be achieved through legislation, when Congress did not enact the American Innovation and Choice Online Act (AICOA). A successful ... The FTC Shouldn’t Try to Make Amazon Divest Its Logistics Service

Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Pruning the Data Tree Edition

In my last roundup, I puzzled over the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) suit to block Amgen’s acquisition of Horizon Therapeutics. The deal involved no product overlaps whatsoever (i.e., no horizontal competition), a target firm acknowledged to have no competitors for the orphan drugs at issue, and nobody poised to enter into competition either. I won’t ... Antitrust at the Agencies Roundup: Pruning the Data Tree Edition

FTC Returns to Section 18 Rulemaking with Impersonation Fraud Hearing

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) last week held its first informal hearing in 20 years on Section 18 rulemaking. The hearing itself had a technical delay, which to us participants felt like another 20 years, but was a mere two hours or so. At issue is a proposed rule intended to target impersonation fraud. Impersonation fraudsters hold themselves out ... FTC Returns to Section 18 Rulemaking with Impersonation Fraud Hearing