Comments on Updating the Merger Guidelines
Of course, the Merger Guidelines need to be updated. Except for efficiencies, they haven’t been updated in 17 years. Lawyers and economists with a regular antitrust practice may not require an update in light of their knowledge of the 2006 Commentary, speeches and agency experience. But, the rest of the antitrust world does. The most obvious audience is the courts, who should know what the agencies believe is best practice. Moreover, as FTC Commissioner Kovacic has stressed, the world marketplace for antitrust ideas needs to have the guidance of the US enforcement agencies. They should not have to ferret it out from commentaries and speeches. The Merger Guidelines have been the most emulated feature of US antitrust enforcement worldwide. It would be shame to squander the leadership role.