Attendees at this fall’s American Bar Association Forum on Franchising meeting should be forgiven if they left San Diego a bit confused about antitrust trends in the practice area. That’s because two major sessions presented different views on the future of antitrust issues in franchise and distribution law.
An antitrust workshop (“Antitrust Issues: Back in Vogue”) pointed to the leniency of antitrust enforcement of vertical agreements during the last 30 years, but predicted a change due to the pro-enforcement stance of the Obama administration. “In many ways, the pendulum has now begun to swing in the other direction.”
A contrary view was expressed during the Annual Franchise a [...]
Are U.S. antitrust laws suited to deal with the challenges presented by rapidly evolving digital industries?
That was the question posed at a September 16 hearing of the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Courts and Competition Policy.
The subcommittee heard testimony from six witnesses, including a top Federal Trade Commission official, a consultant to the telecom industry, the head of a global think tank, and a research director for a consumer advocacy group.
As with many antitrust policy issues, the responses varied and depended on who was answering the question.
Market Principles, Flexibility
The first witness, FTC Bureau of Competition Director Richard Feinstein, pointed [...]