American Antitrust Institute calls for the FTC to investigate microprocessor firm

Monopoly pressure increases for Intel

The American Antitrust Institute has sent an open letter to the FTC urging it to open up an investigation into the manufacturers actions within the microprocessor market, which it claims are anti-competitive.

It cites the Statement of Objections that was issued against Intel by the European Commission as validity to its claims.

The letter, written by the American Antitrust Institutes’ president, Albert Foer states: "Intel is clearly a monopolist in the microprocessor manufacturing industry, which for practical purposes is a global duopoly whose control over an essential ingredient for high technology makes it a critical focal point for competition policy."

"There seems to be no compelling evidence that this industry is a natural monopoly, so it becomes especially important to be vigilant against strategies by the dominant firm that might eliminate or cripple its only rival’s ability to gain substantial market share as a result of its hard-won and pro-competitive innovations and efficiency," he added.

Continuing he wrote: "Based on allegations by AMD in a private U.S. case and on what we have been able to learn about the EC’s complaint (the details of which are not yet public), not to mention a settlement in Japan and an on-going investigation in Korea, there seems to be substantial reason to worry about Intel’s rebate policies, in particular, which appear to be fashioned for the purpose of keeping Original Equipment Manufacturers from switching orders to a chip that, on the merits, they may prefer to purchase from AMD."

The letter came as Intel confirmed that the FTC had asked the manufacturer to provide information concerning the firms recent deal with ST Micros in which it agreed to fund a memory company.

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