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Recently, Senate Antitrust Subcommittee Ranking Member Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced the “Monopolization Deterrence Act of 2019.” The bill would enable the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice to seek civil monetary penalties against individuals and corporations that engage in anticompetitive behavior such as favoring their own services over a competitor’s service.
The penalty could amount to 15 percent of the company’s total U.S. revenue of the previous calendar year or 30 percent of the company’s total U.S. revenue related to the unlawful conduct during the time that this conduct took place -- whichever amount is greater. Public Knowledge applauds Sen. Klobuchar for her leadership in deterring monopolization and for holding individuals and companies accountable for anticompetitive behavior.
The following can be attributed to Charlotte Slaiman, Competition Policy Counsel at Public Knowledge:
“Many of the important competitive concerns affecting people today are analyzed under the framework of monopolization outlined in Section 2 of the Sherman Act. This includes anticompetitive self-preferencing by vertically integrated firms, anticompetitive refusals to deal fairly with competitors or potential competitors, and anticompetitive tying or bundling.
“Section 2 monopolization cases are more difficult to bring than other cases, and if the government wins at court, it usually can do no more than stop the offending company from engaging in the same anticompetitive behavior in the future. Adding monetary penalties as a percentage of a company’s U.S. revenue could help deter anticompetitive conduct and give the antitrust enforcement agencies more leverage to promote competition in these types of cases.”