Facebook antitrust inquiry by the FTC focuses on acquisitions, report says

Yolanda Curtis
August 4, 2019

After what sounds like ages now, the Federal Trade Commission this week confirmed that it has reached a United States dollars 5 billion settlement with Facebook over a privacy breach. The FTC is examining Facebook's acquisitions to determine whether they were part of the company's plan to snap up rival before they could become a threat, the WSJ reported, citing people familiar with the matter. During the meeting that took place last July 16 at the United States Congress, Matt Perault, responsible for the company's Global Policy Development, stated that these operations served as a spur to innovation, allowing companies with complementary peculiarities to be brought together under the same roof.


Both FTC and Facebook, whose shares Facebook shares fell 0.77% declined to comment on the report.


Facebook did confirm in its recent second-quarter report it's the subject of an FTC investigation but offered no details.


In June, Reuters reported that the FTC and the Justice Division, which implement USA antitrust legal guidelines, have divided oversight over the massive 4 tech corporations, with Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) and Fb beneath the watch of the FTC, and Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Alphabet Inc's (GOOGL.O) Google beneath the Justice Division. The announcement came after the agency said it was fining Facebook a record-setting $5 billion for alleged privacy missteps. "I think the FTC will do a thorough job but it is not obvious to me they will build a case out of it". Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has called for breaking up companies like Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook and unwinding prior acquisitions. Probably the most well-known case in current reminiscence is the federal government's effort to interrupt up Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O).

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