Revisiting Antitrust Institutions: The Case for Guidelines to Recalibrate the FTC’s Section 5 Unfair Methods of Competition Authority

By Joshua D. Wright (George Mason University)

The absence of guidelines identifying the boundaries of the Federal Trade Commission’s authority to prosecute unfair methods of competition under Section 5 has rendered this enforcement tool ineffective in helping the agency fulfill its competition mission. As the Commission approaches its centennial, it should strive to achieve the long overdue goal of articulating a coherent policy for the application of its signature competition statute that ensures it is targeting anticompetitive conduct and not deterring welfare-enhancing behavior.

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