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Open Markets: FTC’s Proposed Rent-to-Own Settlement Is Toothless

Date Published: March 30, 2020

The FTC has proposed to settle a market allocation scheme among three leading rent-to-own operators with a “do not break the law again” order and also opted not to challenge an illegal interlocking directorate arrangement among two of them. The rent-to-own industry is a part of the fringe financial sector (think payday and title lenders, pawn shops, and check cashers) that preys on the working poor squeezed by low and volatile incomes and denied access to conventional credit.

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Open Markets and Allies Reject Proposed Guidelines for Vertical Mergers as Bad Law and Bad Policy

Date Published: February 26, 2020

The Open Markets Institute and our allies agree there is a pressing need for new vertical merger guidelines. The existing guidelines were fundamentally flawed when they were first introduced by the Reagan Administration in 1984. OMI and its allies call on the FTC and the DOJ to draft new guidelines consistent with the text and purpose of the Clayton Act and the DOJ’s 1968 Merger Guidelines.

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Open Markets: “T-Mobile/Sprint Ruling Legitimizes Monopoly”

Date Published: February 11, 2020

“Judge Victor Marrero’s ruling allowing T-Mobile’s acquisition of Sprint further concentrates the national wireless market and empowers all corporations seeking dominance through mergers and acquisitions,” said Open Markets Legal Director Sandeep Vaheesan in a statement today.

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Open Markets: DOJ is Empowering Monopolists in the Media and Entertainment Industries

Date Published: November 19, 2019

“This decision proves that Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust Makan Delrahim grossly misled the American people when he said he would engage in principle-based enforcement of America’s antimonopoly laws, including a tougher opposition to vertical integration by dominant platforms and network monopolies,” said Open Markets Executive Director Barry Lynn.

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Open Markets and Eight Other Public Interest Groups Demand FTC Block Google’s Fitbit Acquisition

Date Published: November 13, 2019

Ahead of the House Judiciary Committee’s hearing today on the perspectives of the antitrust agencies on tech monopolies, and in light of the news of Google’s undisclosed partnership with one of the largest health care systems in the United States, the Open Markets Institute along with eight other public interest groups are demanding that the Federal Trade Commission block Google’s $2.1 billion acquisition of Fitbit. 

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Open Markets Supports Athletes’ Antitrust Attack on NCAA Cartel

Date Published: October 30, 2019

Today, the Open Markets Institute, Change To Win, the National Employment Law Project, and Professors Marshall Steinbaum, Sanjukta Paul, and Veena Dubal filed an amici curiae brief supporting current and former college basketball and football players in their antitrust suit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).

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Open Markets Exposes Monopolization of Repair Markets in Comment to FTC

Date Published: September 16, 2019

“​Corporations are using dirty tricks to control and restrict repair in virtually every industry, from consumer electronics and appliances, to agriculture, even the military,” said Claire Kelloway, Open Markets Food and Power reporter. “The FTC has the authority to break up these repair monopolies, ​and we hope the​y step in to do what’s right for consumers, small businesses, and the planet.”

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Open Markets Applauds Supreme Court in Apple v. Pepper

Date Published: May 13, 2019

“This is an important win in the public’s fight against monopoly in the tech sector and elsewhere,” said Open Markets Legal Director Sandeep Vaheesan. “The Court followed its own precedent and the plain text of the Clayton Act and rejected Apple’s specious attempt to exempt itself and other monopolists from consumer antitrust suits for damages.”

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FTC’s Facebook Fine Fails the Public

Date Published: April 26, 2019

“The FTC’s likely fine appears to be grossly insufficient to punishing Facebook for its outrageous behavior,” stated Open Markets Executive Director Barry Lynn. “By failing to stand up for its own authority, the FTC appears, in turn,  to be demonstrating complete disregard for the fundamental interests of the American people.”

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Open Markets Serving Up Anti-Monopoly for Dinner

Date Published: April 5, 2019

Open Markets published a major policy brief, ‘Food and Power: Addressing Monopolization in America’s Food System’, framing the national conversation surrounding the problems facing rural America and the discussion by Democratic leaders at the Heartland Forum regarding proposed solutions including reining in major corporate monopolies.

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Merger of Dominant Printers Poses Yet Another Threat to U.S. News Media; Open Markets Calls on Justice Department to Block Deal

Date Published: March 6, 2019

Today, Open Markets has sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) calling for the DOJ to block printer Quad/Graphics’ (Quad) plan to buy its biggest competitor, LSC Communications (LSC), for $1.4 billion. The letter, signed by Open Markets, the Authors Guild, PEN America, is addressed to Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim.

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OMI Joins EPIC and Civil Society Groups in Letter to EU Commissioner for Competition

Date Published: July 18, 2018
For Immediate Release: July 18, 2018
Contact: Mckenzie Jones at [email protected]
Open Markets Institute Joins EPIC and Civil Society Groups in Encouraging EU Competition Commissioner to Move More Swiftly on Google
Washington, DC – This morning, the Open Markets Institute joined the Electronic Privacy Information Center, the Center for Digital Democracy, Consumer Watchdog, and Fight for the Future in the release of the following letter to EU Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager.
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Open Markets Statement on AT&T/Time Warner Decision

Date Published: June 12, 2018

In response to Judge Richard Leon’s decision in the AT&T/Time Warner case today, the Open Markets Institute has released the following statement:

Earlier today, Judge Richard Leon permitted the mega-merger between AT&T and Time Warner to proceed. The decision is a big loss for the public. The vertical integration between a distributor – AT&T – and a creator of entertainment – Time Warner –  paves the way for an even more concentrated and closed telecommunications industry.

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Supreme Court Gives Business a Big Win Over Workers

Date Published: May 21, 2018

Today the Supreme Court tilted the competitive playing field away from honest businesses and towards abusive ones. The court decided that employers who use forced arbitration clauses can block worker class actions, depriving employees of their right to band together to access the justice system. Today’s decision means big employers can steal wages, unlawfully discriminate and harass, and violate workplace rights with impunity.

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Open Markets Condemns Amazon Plan to Buy Whole Foods

Date Published: June 16, 2017

The following statement can be attributed to Barry C. Lynn, Director of the Open Markets Program at New America:

Amazon announced today that it wants to buy grocery chain Whole Foods for $13.7 billion in cash. If approved by regulators, the deal would worsen the already severe damage that Amazon is doing to America’s competitive, open market system.

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Speech by Open Markets Executive Director Barry Lynn at 5th UNl Global Union

Date Published: June 20, 2018

“We are not consumers, as they define us. We are not mere seekers of stuff, as they define us. We are not even merely workers, fighting merely for workers rights, as they define us.
We are Citizens, and we seek nothing more, nor less, than a Citizen’s Liberty. Liberty to think freely. To share equally in all rule. To own our own selves absolutely.”

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In America today, wealth and political power are more concentrated than at any point in our country’s history.

The Open Markets Institute, formerly the Open Markets program at New America, was founded to protect liberty and democracy from these extreme -- and growing -- concentrations of private power.

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