US Government To Review Major Acquisitions To Avoid Monopoly

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FTC: The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the main market regulation body in the United States, announced this Tuesday (18) that it will review and modernize the procedures and rules that help the institution detect and prevent the formation of monopolies.

The idea is to improve the FTC’s methods of analysis — especially in the case of large acquisitions, with companies possibly acting anti-competitively by absorbing equally strong rivals in the same industry, which can reduce competition.

In addition, the body will now focus more on digital markets, which can “escape” these assessments due to different market characteristics and offering services in parallel areas, even if they are not directly competing.

Stock history

While no cases are named in the statement, TechCrunch believes the FTC will most likely look into Microsoft’s $70 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which was disclosed the same day as the commission’s announcement. The action matches the previous description, being an absorption of a major studio by a giant that, recently, even made a similar move by buying the conglomerate that includes Bethesda.

In previous lawsuits in the technology market, the FTC in 2017 filed a lawsuit against Qualcomm for alleged dominance in the mobile connection chip market. More recently, the agency began investigating the acquisitions that formed the Facebook empire, now called Meta.

The FTC has opened a public consultation to receive membership contributions through March 21, 2022, and will subsequently release the new rules to the public.