Why Have Merger Guidelines? A Closer Look at the Department of Justice and FTC Proposed Changes, Part I

The Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) made headlines in July with their proposed merger guidelines. The guidelines are significant departures from previous practices, reflecting the ideological and power structure changes the Biden administration has brought to the agencies. If implemented, the proposed guidelines will increase political risk for businesses and lower their efficiency, resulting in American businesses and workers losing out to foreign competitors.

I analyze these proposed guidelines in two parts. This blog is Part I and describes how and why the agencies developed and strengthened their merger guidelines over time. Part II will examine how the proposed guidelines abandon much of the DOJ and FTC’S decades-long work.

Read Dr. Jamison’s complete blog post at AEI.