New Executive Order Aims for Competitive Marketplace
President Joe Biden's July 9 executive order strives for a fairer and more open marketplace. The order encourages the leading antitrust agencies to focus enforcement efforts on problems in key markets and coordinates other agencies' ongoing response to corporate consolidation. Among other things, according to a White House fact sheet, it does the following:
- Calls on the leading antitrust agencies, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC), to enforce the antitrust laws vigorously and recognizes that the law allows them to challenge prior bad mergers that past administrations did not previously challenge.
- Announces a policy that enforcement should focus in particular on labor markets, agricultural markets, healthcare markets (which includes prescription drugs, hospital consolidation and insurance), and the tech sector.
- Establishes a White House Competition Council, led by the director of the National Economic Council, to monitor progress on finalizing the initiatives in the order and to coordinate the federal government's response to the rising power of large corporations in the economy.