Antitrust or Pro-Competition?

by Neil Jacoby



The article focuses on antitrust enforcement activities. Antitrust represents only a small part of a comprehensive policy for competition in the U.S. economy. The author shares the prevalent opinion that antitrust enforcement activities are both relevant and necessary in the U.S. economic order. Price-fixing and market-sharing schemes are concocted by businessmen with sufficient frequency to require corrective action by government. Instances of predatory pricing and unfair competitive behavior occur often enough to justify governmental intervention. Some business mergers would impair competition and should be prevented. Although competition is a powerful motive and the economy is not monopoly-prone, it needs a policeman on the industrial beat to monitor business behavior. Historically, antitrust has contributed importantly to the maintenance of effective competition. Present antitrust policy, however, is partial in its application and is largely negative in its approach. Its standard legal instruments are suits for injunction and for divestment.

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