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Friday, August 6, 2021

Biden Takes Aim at Corporate Consolidation, Big-Business Tactics

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WASHINGTON—President Biden on Friday will sign a broad executive order that aims to promote competitive markets and limit corporate dominance that the White House says puts consumers, workers and smaller firms at a disadvantage.

The order encourages agencies across the federal government to adopt policies and write regulations that push back against corporate consolidation and business practices that may stifle competition, lead to higher prices and lead to fewer product choices.

Among the White House’s targets are agriculture, healthcare, shipping, transportation and technology, as well as labor practices that the administration says limit wages and mobility. The executive order also seeks to promote affordable broadband and boost consumers’ rights to repair products they own, an issue of concern because of limitations imposed by an array of companies.

The order “will lower prices for families, increase wages for workers, and promote innovation and even faster economic growth,” the White House said Friday.

Mr. Biden’s move, months in the making, comes as Democrats have made competition policy and antitrust enforcement a key part of their agenda, arguing U.S. officials haven’t done enough to preserve healthy, competitive markets.

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