Biden to sign sweeping ordinance to reduce corporate power – .

Biden to sign sweeping ordinance to reduce corporate power – .

Joe Biden is set to sign an executive order aimed at restraining the power of big business by eliminating anti-competitive practices that hurt his smaller rivals.

The White House on Friday unveiled 72 measures in Biden’s order, which include a ban on non-compete clauses for workers and cover sectors ranging from technology and transportation to healthcare and banking.

The US president also called for stricter enforcement of existing US antitrust laws, which could trigger further scrutiny of merger and acquisition activity.

The White House said in a backgrounder on the executive order: “Economists find that as competition decreases, productivity growth slows, business investment and innovation declines, and incomes, wealth and racial inequalities are growing. “

“When former presidents faced similar threats from growing corporate power, they took bold action,” he added, citing the efforts of Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the early part of the 20th century. .

Biden administration’s push on competition includes provision to “encourage” the Federal Trade Commission, the primary competition regulator chaired by Big Tech critic Lina Khan, to “ban or limit” non-compete clauses in order to make it “easier to change jobs and help increase wages”.

Other measures include a plan to limit the ability of manufacturers to prevent customers from requesting their own repairs on certain products and a ban on excessive termination fees on Internet invoices.

Hearing aids would be allowed to be sold over the counter in drug stories, while airline customers would have an easier time getting refunds, and bank customers would be able to pass their data on to other vendors with less difficulty. than they currently do.

Biden’s order also directs the United States Food and Drug Administration to work with states and tribes to import prescription drugs from Canada, the latest offer aimed at lowering drug costs.

The executive order comes as the Biden administration faces criticism from Republicans that its $ 1.9 billion stimulus package has fueled inflation and raised the cost of living for American consumers.

But it is also consistent with the US President’s efforts to shift the balance of power in the US economy from corporations and big business to small businesses and lower and middle class households.

However, it is unclear to what extent Biden’s plan will actually be implemented in the way the White House hoped for. Many of the provisions are encouraged but not mandatory, and would be more powerful if enacted into law.


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