U.S. FTC to hear findings of tech firms too small

U.S. FTC to hear findings of tech firms too small

WASHINGTON Reuters - The U.S. Federal Trade Commission will hold its next open meeting on 15 Sept to hear staff findings from firms like Facebook and Apple that are often too small for Antitrust scrutiny, the agency said on Wednesday.

The agency began holding open meetings after chair Lina Khan was sworn in June. Next week, the five commissioners will also consider whether to scrap guidelines put in place during the Trump administration concerning transactions that combine a company with one of their suppliers.

The staff report will include large-scale acquisitions from 2010 to 2019, some of which were not reported to antitrust enforcers because of their small size.

The big tech companies, including Google and Amazon.com, have been under antitrust scrutiny for more than two years. The Justice Department sued Facebook while the FTC sued Google. Other are currently under investigation.

The agency has sent requests for information to five smaller tech firms, including Microsoft, in February 2020, saying that it wanted to investigate whether any of the big deals resulted in harm to competition.

The three Republicans and two Democrats on the commission will also vote on whether to issue a policy statement on privacy breaches by health apps and process for accepting input on potential rules.