The Bureau of Economics helps the FTC
evaluate the economic impact of its actions. To do so, the Bureau
provides economic analysis and support to antitrust and consumer protection
investigations and rulemakings. It also analyzes the impact of government
regulation on competition and consumers and provides Congress, the
Executive Branch and the public with economic analysis of market processes
as they relate to antitrust, consumer protection, and regulation.
Bureau of Economics economic advice
The Bureau provides guidance and support
to the agencys antitrust and consumer protection enforcement
activities. In the antitrust area, the Bureau participates in the
investigation of alleged anti competitive acts or practices and provides
advice on the economic merits of alternative antitrust actions. If
an enforcement action is initiated, the Bureau integrates economic
analysis into the proceeding (sometimes providing the expert witness
at trial) and works with the Bureau
of Competition to devise appropriate remedies.
In the consumer protection area, the
Bureau provides economic support and analysis of potential Commission
actions in both cases and rulemakings handled by the Bureau
of Consumer Protection. Bureau economists also provide analysis
of appropriate penalty levels to deter activity that harms consumers.
Bureau of Economic legislative options
The Bureau participates in the FTCs
advocacy activities. The Commissions three bureaus present comments,
upon request, to other agencies and entities concerning the effects
of regulation on competition and consumers. At the request of lawmakers
or agency officials, comments or testimony often are provided to assist
legislatures consideration of pending bills or to assist agency
rulemaking proceedings. Similarly, a micus curiae briefs may be presented
to federal or state courts. These submissions advocate policies that
will enhance both competition and consumer choice.
Bureau of Economic market processes
The Bureau also conducts economic analysis
of various markets and industries. This work focuses on the economic
effects of regulation and on issues important to antitrust and consumer
protection policy. Many of these analysis are published as staff reports.
Federal Trade Commission