House Judiciary to launch antitrust probe into Silicon Valley giants

June 3, 2019

The House Judiciary Committee announced an antitrust investigation of Silicon Valley, which will conduct a "top-to-bottom" review of the market power and competitive activities of major U.S. technology companies.

The bipartisan probe, announced in a Medium post, said the investigation will include a series of hearings by the Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law on the rise of market power online. According to reports, the probe will examine several major industry players, including Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google. 

"Given the growing tide of concentration and consolidation across the economy, it is vital that we investigate the current state of competition in digital markets and the health of antitrust laws," Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler said in a statement released on Twitter.

The probe will focus on three areas:

Documenting competition problems in digital markets.Examining whether dominant firms are engaging in anti-competitive conduct.Assessing whether existing antitrust laws, competition policies and current enforcement levels are adequate to address these issues.

Harold Feld, senior vice president of Washington-based Public Knowledge, said the bipartisan probe is reminiscent of the Congressional investigation of competition in the telecommunications industry 25 years ago.

"It is refreshing to see both parties committed to a rigorous and broad analysis to understand the complexities and importance of the digital marketplace, and the increasing signs of growing dominance by a small number of companies," he said in a statement released by the organization.

A spokesperson for Amazon declined to comment. None of the remaining companies were immediately available for comment. 

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Topics: Mobile/Digital Wallet, Mobile Payments, Regulatory Issues, Social Media, Technology Providers

Companies: Facebook, Google, Amazon

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