The Federal Trade Commission’s new Economic Liberty Task Force, launched by FTC Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen, is an important step that addresses concerns from this blogger and others that the FTC’s commissioners should do more to head off the competitive restraints imposed by certain state licensing requirements. The move is consistent with recent efforts by…

On January 25, 2017, the Trump administration designated Commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen as Acting Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission. Because Ohlhausen has been a Commissioner since 2012 (and held other FTC positions before that), she certainly left plenty of tea leaves for antitrust practitioners to read as they tried to guess how she would act…

As 2016 comes to a close, a number of important trends in antitrust have emerged that will likely have lasting effects on competition law enforcement in the coming years. A new administration will put its mark on federal antitrust policy, but the following five developments witnessed at the Department of Justice Antitrust Division and FTC…

There has been a lot of speculation about what impact the election of Donald J. Trump will have on antitrust enforcement over the next four to eight years. Some commenters have suggested that Trump’s rhetoric on the campaign trail signals dramatic changes. Candidate Trump spoke of blocking AT&T Inc.’s proposed acquisition of Time Warner Inc….

Like students going back to school, members of the antitrust community returned last week from summer vacations and started debating the finer points of antitrust policy at various conferences. As is often the case, the highlights included speeches by top antitrust enforcers. And there were plenty of speeches – multiple speeches by each of the…

On April 27, 2016, the FTC entered an administrative complaint against Invibio, Inc., accusing it and its parent company, Victrex, of violating FTC Act Section 5 through exclusive dealing contracts. The companies agreed to a consent order, also issued that day. Because the antitrust aspects of exclusive dealing remain unsettled, practitioners (and their clients) would…

As 2015 comes to a close, it’s time to take a look back at some of the major federal antitrust enforcement highlights of the year. While headline-grabbing merger challenges dominated antitrust news, the year was marked by other important antitrust developments that are worth noting. Department of Justice Enforcement Merger enforcement. In the last 12 months, only…

The FTC has notched two Supreme Court wins in recent years to narrow the state action exemption.  But elements of those two cases might best be seen as evidence that the FTC is losing the broader fight: increasing antitrust compliance by convincing non-experts of the wisdom of antitrust’s principles. Here’s a quick refresher on the…

The Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice Antitrust Division had another active year in antitrust enforcement in 2014. As for FTC antitrust enforcement efforts, FTC Bureau of Competition Director Deborah L. Feinstein was kind enough to provide a list of the “Ten Competition Happenings for 2014” on the agency’s Competition Matters blog. Her list…

The Federal Trade Commission will soon be back to having a full complement of five commissioners. Today, the U.S. Senate, by a vote of 95 to 1, confirmed Terrell McSweeny to fill a vacancy at the agency created by the departure of Jon D. Leibowitz more than a year ago. The term runs through September…