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FTC Looking At Labor Impact Of Microsoft-Activision Merger

 |  June 16, 2022

The Federal Trade Commission is investigating Microsoft Corp.’s proposed purchase of Activision Blizzard Inc. and how it might impact workers, chair Lina Khan told lawmakers.

In a June 9 letter to Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, Khan confirmed the agency is looking into the proposed deal, noting that the companies previously disclosed the FTC’s merger review.

“I strongly believe that merger investigations must scrutinize the impact on labor markets,” Khan said. “Whenever the FTC initiates a merger review, we are committed to thoroughly examining effects on competition in all relevant markets for potential law enforcement action.”

Khan’s letter was a response to a March 31 missive from Warren and other senators urging the FTC to closely examine how the proposed deal would impact workers at Activision, who have called for greater accountability at the company in the wake of sexual harassment and discrimination allegations.

Related: Microsoft-Activision Deal To Face Antitrust Scrutiny

In her letter, Khan said the FTC is also focusing on whether certain types of contracts, such as non-compete clauses that bar workers from switching jobs within an industry or non-disclosure agreements, violate antitrust or consumer protection laws.

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