FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Stacy Mitchell, firstname.lastname@example.org
Stacy Mitchell, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and author of Monopoly Power and the Decline of Small Business: The Case for Restoring America’s Once Robust Antitrust Policies, issued the following statement today in response to Hillary Clinton’s economic policy speech in Ohio, in which she discussed growing corporate concentration and its impact on small business, and called for stronger antitrust measures:
“It’s very encouraging to see corporate concentration front-and-center in the presidential election. Clinton’s policy proposals represent a significant break from the permissive approach that has guided antitrust enforcement since Reagan. If implemented, these changes would help to level the playing field for small businesses and ensure that entrepreneurs have a real opportunity to compete.
“The current trends for small businesses and startups are deeply troubling. In nearly every sector of the economy, we have seen a steep decline in the number of small businesses, as well as fewer new business startups. Over the last 15 years, the number of small manufacturers fell by more than 70,000, for example, while local retailers saw their ranks diminish by about 108,000.
“There is mounting evidence that corporate concentration is largely to blame for these trends. In industries like banking, agriculture, and pharmacy, large dominant corporations have used their market power to block small businesses from competing and force them out of the market. Although the U.S. has strong anti-monopoly policies, changes in how we enforce those policies, beginning in the 1980s, have allowed anti-competitive behavior on the part of big businesses to go unchecked, leaving small businesses vulnerable.
“Clinton’s statements echo the statements of a growing number of both liberal and conservative thinkers, economists, and policymakers, who believe that monopoly power is a threat to the health of the U.S. economy.”
The Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) is a 42-year-old national nonprofit research and educational organization. ILSR’s mission is to provide innovative strategies, working models, and timely information to support strong, community rooted, environmentally sound, and equitable local economies.