The US FTC and DoJ consider reforming the Horizontal Merger Guidelines and reducing the importance of the consumer welfare standard

Recent statements by the heads of the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice suggest that new merger guidelines may replace the tried-andtested consumer welfare standard with a series of alternate goals. Proponents of such a shift see a need to promote goals other than consumer welfare and believe the consumer welfare standard is inadequate to enforce against mergers resulting in certain types of harms. We disagree. Shifting away from the consumer welfare standard will necessarily harm consumers, resulting in higher prices and lower output. In contrast, sticking with the consumer welfare standard is not biased toward or against enforcement, is consistent with enforcement against a variety of types of harm (as reflected in the agencies’ recent enforcement decisions), and

Access to this article is restricted to subscribers

Already Subscribed? Sign-in

Access to this article is restricted to subscribers.

Read one article for free

Sign-up to read this article for free and discover our services.

 

PDF Version

Authors

  • Compass Lexecon (Washington)
  • Compass Lexecon (Washington)
  • Compass Lexecon (Washington)

Quotation

Mark A. Israel, Jonathan M. Orszag, Jeremy Sandford, The US FTC and DoJ consider reforming the Horizontal Merger Guidelines and reducing the importance of the consumer welfare standard, 10 March 2022, e-Competitions November 2022 - II, Art. N° 109687

Visites 47

All issues

  • Latest News issue 
  • All News issues
  • Latest Special issue 
  • All Special issues