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Matt Stoller


Matt Stoller is a fellow at the Open Markets Institute. He is writing a book on monopoly power in the 20th century for Simon and Schuster. Previously, he was a Senior Policy Advisor and Budget Analyst to the Senate Budget Committee. He also worked in the U.S. House of Representatives on financial services policy, including Dodd-Frank, the Federal Reserve, and the foreclosure crisis. He has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, The New Republic, Vice, and Salon. He was a producer for MSNBC’s The Dylan Ratigan Show, and served as a writer and actor on the short-lived FX television series Brand X with Russell Brand. You can follow him on Twitter at @matthewstoller.

Latest Work

How Israel’s Antimonopolists Helped Take Down Benjamin Netanyahu

Date Published: November 13, 2019

Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller published a piece on Pro-Market on November 13, 2019 writing that the corruption exposed by Israeli antimonopolists has been a key driver of Benjamin Netanyahu’s current political woes. “If Israelis, in one of the most complex geopolitical situations in the world, can address their oligarchs, then people everywhere can do it too,” Stoller writes.

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American workers are bored and disillusioned. Here’s what may bring them back

Date Published: November 1, 2019

Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller writes that American workers are increasingly bored and disillusioned, locked in increasingly centralized castles of lazy profit. Some are mistreated, but for even the most scientifically in demand, luxurious poké bowls don’t substitute for doing meaningful work. But he asserts it’s time to set American producers free once again to solve real problems. We’ve done it before. It’s called competition.

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How Democrats Became the Party of Monopoly and Corruption

Date Published: October 22, 2019

In this excerpt of his new book “Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy,” Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller explains how the “new” Democrats like Dale Bumpers and Bill Clinton of Arkansas worked to rid their state of the usury caps meant to protect the “plain people” from the banker and financier. The Democratic Party embraced not just the tactics, but the ideology of the Chicago School.

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Tech Companies Are Destroying Democracy and the Free Press

Date Published: October 17, 2019

In this op-ed for the New York Times, Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller spotlights how advertising revenue that used to go to quality journalism is now captured by big tech intermediaries, and some of that money now goes to dishonest, low-quality and fraudulent content. “The collapse of journalism and democracy in the face of the internet is not inevitable,” he argues. “To save democracy and the free press, we must eliminate Google and Facebook’s control over the information commons.”

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Corporate America’s Second War With the Rule of Law

Date Published: October 16, 2019

Uber, Facebook, and Google are increasingly behaving like the law-flouting financial empires of the 1920s, asserts Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller. We know how that turned out. “The rule of law is a precious political achievement of liberal democracy,” Stoller writes. “It doesn’t just happen. We the people, along with elected public servants, have to make it happen. “

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National Review: Amid a Revival of Anti-Monopoly Sentiment, a New Book Traces Its History

Date Published: October 15, 2019

Matt Stoller’s Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Populism charts the shifts in American attitudes toward corporate consolidation. Kyle Sammin reviews the book on the National Review writing that “Though anti-monopolism has been dormant for decades, the corporate consolidation of this century has given Americans on both sides of the political spectrum reason to wonder if it should be awakened. And Stoller’s treatise is a good place to start in thinking through that question.”

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Vox: Bernie Sanders’s plan to reshape corporate America, explained

Date Published: October 14, 2019

Vox’s Tara Golshan reports on Bernie Sanders’ plan on corporate accountability and democracy and gets comments from Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller. “Saying that the FTC has failed its mission and lost its credibility as a regulatory agency is important,” Stoller said. “Bernie is coming out with a progressive platform to address monopolies, but it is actually pro-business platform. … A lot of the pressure from the FTC is coming from the business community.”

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The Rise and Fall of Andrew Mellon

Date Published: October 14, 2019

He was America’s most powerful businessman and the Treasury secretary throughout the 1920s. His corruption would lead to an impeachment inquiry. This is an exclusive excerpt for The American Prospect from the new book ‘Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy’, by Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller, out this month from Simon & Schuster.

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Why U.S. Businesses Want Trustbusting

Date Published: October 11, 2019

Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller publishes an adapted excerpt of his book “Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy” on the Wall Street Journal. He asserts the loudest complaints against today’s monopolies come not from Occupy Wall Street types but from leaders of firms seeking freedom of commerce.

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The American Prospect: Monopoly and its Discontents

Date Published: October 9, 2019

Gerald Berk reviews Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller’s new book Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy on The American Prospect. He writes that Matt Stoller’s ‘Goliath’ seeks to recover and explain the anti-monopoly tradition of the 20th century, at a time when it is urgently needed in the 21st. “Democrats who seek to revitalize their party would do well to study Matt Stoller’s Goliath and incorporate—in a complex and thoughtful manner—its central teachings,” Berk says.

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NYT: WeWork C.E.O. Adam Neumann Steps Down Under Pressure

Date Published: September 24, 2019

The New York Times reports on the troubles facing WeWork C.E.O. Adam Neumann before his recent resignation. Reporters asked Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller for comment. “Investors saw through Lyft, and they saw through Uber as well,” Matt Stoller told the NYT. “This one has simply been rejected. Investors are saying, ‘We’re not going to tolerate this nonsense anymore.’”

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The great break-up of Big Tech is finally beginning

Date Published: September 9, 2019

Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller published a piece on The Guardian on the heels of news that U.S. state attorneys general are launching a bipartisan investigation into Facebook and Google. “These corporations have become too powerful to be contained by democratic societies,” he writes. “We must work through our government to break them up and regulate our information commons, or they will end up becoming our government and choosing what we see and know about the world around us.”

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NBC News: ‘Impressive and a little scary’: How Amazon and Jeff Bezos made Washington a second home

Date Published: September 6, 2019

NBC News reports that many companies have cozied up to the nation’s capital, but none have accrued the kind of presence and reach that Amazon will soon boast. Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller weighs in: “Now you have the richest man in the country running one of the biggest companies in the country, owning The Washington Post and bringing massive numbers of employees to D.C. That’s really breaking down a wall that has existed since the founding of the country, which is that we keep our business centers and our political centers separate.”

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Bloomberg: Google Parent’s Investing Arm Battles Suspicion in Profit Quest

Date Published: August 26, 2019

Bloomberg reporters John Gittelsohn and Gerrit De Vynck reports on how CapitalG, a private investment arm of Alphabet has been in all the right places lately, generating billions of dollars in gains. The success is raising questions about the company’s strategy and sprawling influence over the technology industry. They speak with Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller who told them: “Deal flow gives you a lot of insight into what other people are doing in the market.”

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Bloomberg: The Techlash Is Only Making Facebook Stronger

Date Published: August 14, 2019

Bloomberg’s Sarah Frier writes a critical report about the Federal Trade Commission’s $5 billion settlement with Facebook. She reports that the FTC’s antitrust investigation looks a lot less imposing given its privacy settlement with the company and speaks with Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller. “For any anticompetitive behavior they want to get away with, they’re going to say, ‘The FTC made us,’ ” Stoller told her. “That’s what they bought for $5 billion.”

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Fast Company: Gmail keeps a record of your purchase history in plain sight, and it’s not alone

Date Published: August 6, 2019

Joel Winston writes a story for Fast Company about how Google is collecting your transaction data directly from your Gmail inbox and other Google services you use. He cites Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller’s op-ed on The New York Times on Facebook’s Calibra project raising the specter of big tech’s ability to discriminate on pricing to consumers.

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Fast Company: This senator was Big Tech’s friend—but is now its greatest threat

Date Published: July 29, 2019

Fast Company reporter Ainsley Harris tells the story of Senator Mark Warner, a former telecom investor and entrepreneur, sounding the alarm on China’s advancement—and Big Tech’s misconduct. She speaks with Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller as part of the feature, describing Stoller as “another voice agitating for policy makers to address Silicon Valley’s ‘concentrations of capital’ and perverse incentives.”

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PBS Newshour: FTC fines Facebook $5 billion for privacy violations, adds oversight

Date Published: July 24, 2019

PBS Newshour speaks to Open Markets Senior Fellow Matthew Stoller about the Federal Trade Commission’s $5 billion settlement with Facebook. “There should be structural solutions to force competition into the social networking market,” Stoller said. “One of the angles for competition is privacy. They will compete to make a safer space to retain their user base.”

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How Antitrust Became Mainstream, Part 3: The Antimonopoly Political Revolution

Date Published: July 23, 2019

In this third and final part of his three-part series on the resurgence of antimonopoly for Pro-Market, Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller explains how the election of Donald Trump helped bring antimonopoly thinking back to the forefront of the political discourse. “The most important political figures in the return of antimonopoly politics are Elizabeth Warren and Donald Trump,” asserts Stoller. “There are many people in Europe, India, and Australia making critical policy choices, but in terms of setting the boundaries of what is possible, it is Warren and Trump who have re-politicized this area.”

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How Antimonopoly Was Revitalized, Part 2: Barack Obama and the End of the End of History

Date Published: July 19, 2019

In this second installment of his three-part series on antitrust’s recent resurrection on Pro-Market, Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller discusses the legacy of Obama’s presidency. The real policy for which Obama will be known is not Obamacare or Dodd-Frank, but bailing out the banks after the 2008 financial crisis and helping Americans and the rest of the world understand that liberal democratic rhetoric was really an ornamental cover for a system of concentrated financial and political power.

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Why Antimonopoly Awoke From Its Slumber, Part 1: The Clinton Era’s Failed Utopia

Date Published: July 17, 2019

In the first part of a three-part series for Pro-Market, Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller explains why antimonopoly politics is experiencing a resurgence. “To understand how far we’ve come, we must understand what was,” writes Stoller. “I am going to try and help us reach back to the 1990s, before the financial crisis, Iraq War, Big Tech’s monopolization, before Nickelback jokes, and so forth.”

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NYT: Fighting Big Tech Makes for Some Uncomfortable Bedfellows

Date Published: July 14, 2019

NYT’s reporter Nellie Bowles looks into how the right and left have come together to break up big tech writing that “Conservatives are showing up at largely liberal conferences to call for breaking up Facebook and Google. Liberals are going on conservative TV shows to do the same.” She talks to Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller about the shift. “I always knew we were aiming at different things,” Stoller said. “Now, we have some of the same goals.”

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WIRED: FTC Reportedly Hits Facebook With $5 Billion Fine

Date Published: July 12, 2019

WIRED reports on the implications of the news of the FTC’s $5 billion Facebook settlement and cites Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller in their reporting. “They can issue a really big fine, which is just a parking ticket,” Stoller recently told WIRED. “We don’t think a fine matters. We need a structural solution here.”

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CNBC: After years of big spending, tech’s political machine turns to high gear

Date Published: July 3, 2019

NBC News speaks with Open Markets Senior Fellow Matthew Stoller on the reaction of think tanks and advocacy groups backed by big tech to Senator Josh Hawley’s proposed legislation aimed at the Silicon Valley giants. Stoller said last time he “saw this kind of collective temper tantrum by all their trade groups was” during the legislative battle over a pair of bills aimed at curtailing sex trafficking online, which altered Section 230.

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America’s Monopoly Crisis Hits the Military

Date Published: June 27, 2019

Open Markets Senior Fellow Matthew Stoller and Lucas Kunce published a feature on The American Conservative exposing the devastating history of military monopolization in America. They describe how Wall Street has given foreign rivals such as China growing leverage over our defense industry by usurping what used to be American manufacturing, not only in telecommunications but in various sectors which are key to our national security.

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CBC: Bank of Facebook: A financial analyst says the Libra is ‘an absurd idea’

Date Published: June 21, 2019

CBC News speaks with Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller about Facebook’s new proposal to launch Libra, a new digital currency. He says Facebook’s proposed global currency would give it the financial powers of a sovereign state and undermine democratic institutions. “It’s an absurd idea to create a global currency system managed by a private group of people. I can’t tell you how ridiculous it is,” he told CBC.

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Launching a Global Currency Is a Bold, Bad Move for Facebook

Date Published: June 19, 2019

Open Markets Institute Senior Fellow Matt Stoller published an op-ed in the New York Times condemning Facebook’s plan to create a new global currency. Stoller writes, “Sorry, but no thanks: We should not be setting up a private international payments network that would need to be backed by taxpayers because it’s too big to fail.”

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Business Insider: The coming antitrust fights are an existential battle over how to protect capitalism

Date Published: June 15, 2019

Open Markets senior fellow Matt Stoller talks to Business Insider’s Linette Lopez about the latest round of hearings by the House Antitrust Subcommittee. Lopez highlights that for the first time in a generation, Washington is questioning what it means to protect American Capitalism. “There’s an increasingly powerful bipartisan view of anti-trust,” Stoller told her.

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Observer: What Breaking Up Facebook Would Actually Entail, According to Experts

Date Published: May 21, 2019

Open Markets’ fellow Matt Stoller talks to the Observer about what breaking up Facebook would look like. “This isn’t rocket science,” Stoller told Observer. “The government should just hire an investment bank to break up the company. Then regulate the data practices and interoperability so that social networking is a neutral communications platform instead of a predatory one.”

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Democrats Need to Tame the Facebook Monster They Helped Create

Date Published: May 20, 2019

If you are thinking about Facebook or questions of political economy, an important and telling hearing took place recently in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Democratic leaders Frank Pallone and Jan Schakowsky did an oversight review of Facebook’s regulator, the Federal Trade Commission, with all five commissioners, including Chairman Joe Simons, advancing ideas on how to address privacy rules in America today.

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When American Capitalism Meant Equality

Date Published: May 14, 2019

American capitalism used to mean economic equality and security. When I mention this in speeches or talks today, this observation prompts laughter, or outright disbelief. But it’s true. Americans used to believe economic equality was foundational to our political system. That America—at least for those considered citizens—carried with it an implicit promise of rough commercial equality. How did this notion change so radically?

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NPR: What To Expect When Uber Hits The Stock Market

Date Published: May 9, 2019

Uber hit the stock market May 10. NPR reported its value may reach 90 billion dollars, But its ultimate market value could face headwinds with the populist movement rising in America. NPR speaks to Open Markets fellow Matt Stoller about Uber’s bigness and whether it could be subject to antitrust in the future.

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Amazon deserves more than rejection from New York. It should be punished

Date Published: February 16, 2019

Amazon pulled out of its deal to build a corporate campus in New York City amid bad press, grassroots activists and local opposition lawmakers calling out the bad deal. Matt Stoller writes on The Guardian that Simply saying ‘no’ to its headquarters isn’t enough – Amazon should be investigated for abusing monopoly power.

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The Guardian: A new antitrust frontier – the issue closing partisan divides in the name of policing big tech

Date Published: February 3, 2019

The Guardian’s David Smith reports on how the left and the right are united in the pursuit of greater accountability and transparency from Silicon Valley’s power players. He talks to Open Markets fellow Matt Stoller about how big tech is bringing together conservatives’ anti-monopoly streak with progressives’ suspicion of big business and wealth inequality.

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Right-Sizing American Capitalism

Date Published: December 13, 2018

Fundamentally rebuilding our democracy means engineering our corporations and markets to enable the freedom of the producer from the domination by the monopolist or financier.

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America’s Amazon Problem

Date Published: June 16, 2017

Open Markets fellow Matthew Stoller writes on the Huffington Post that Jeff Bezos has created an empire that’s quickly raising political questions. Like Google and Facebook, Amazon uses technology and data to sidestep traditional restrictions on monopoly power. Now, Bezos is attempting to add more power to his empire with the surprise announcement that the company will pay $13.7 billion for Whole Foods Market.

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After the Fumble

Date Published: March 1, 2017

Having dominated the Democratic Party for years, the meritocrats now find themselves in a state of crisis.

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Government Has Gutted Its Independent Research

Date Published: November 7, 2016

There is an inherent conflict posed in the financing of policy ideas. On the one hand, money is required to assemble the data and narratives necessary to present policy options. On the other hand, money can also, in and of itself, corrupt those ideas. This is the think tank analogue to the problem presented by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision.

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Monopolies Are Antithetical to Democracy

Date Published: November 4, 2016

The proposed AT&T-Time Warner merger is a watershed moment for our political system. Will we continue to allow the further concentration of economic power at the top, or will this be the moment when democracy fights back?

ATT-Time Warner would be a giant in pay-TV, wireless service, broadband, news and entertainment — it could certainly shape the media to its advantage in a myriad different ways.

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The Housing Crash and the End of American Citizenship

Date Published: July 11, 2012

To many Americans, it feels like the United States is a different country than it was just a few years ago. It is hard to explain to teenagers today that there was a time, even a short time ago, when political institutions did not seem riddled with corruption and when Americans were not split by stark economic and political lines.

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Treat foreclosure as a crime scene

Date Published: December 15, 2011

Bubbling under the surface of politics is the foreclosure crisis — where the power of big finance is brushing up against the rule of law. The party leaders seem to have decided it is essentially a giant — but unavoidable — tragedy. GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney said foreclosures have to clear for the housing market to reset. The Obama administration, meanwhile, has spent only about $2 billion of the $75 billion authorized for the Home Affordable Modification Program.

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

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