WASHINGTON — President Biden signed a sweeping executive order on Friday intended to increase competition within the nation’s economy and to limit corporate dominance, factors the White House says have led to higher prices and fewer choices for consumers while dampening pay and restricting the freedom to change jobs.
The administration encouraged federal agencies to take a wide range of actions, such as more closely scrutinizing the tech industry, cracking down on high fees charged by ocean shippers and allowing hearing aids to be sold over the counter.
“What we’ve seen over the past few decades is less competition and more concentration that holds our economy back,” Mr. Biden said in the White House on Friday, citing the agriculture, technology and pharmaceutical industries. “Rather than competing for consumers, they are consuming their competitors. Rather than competing for workers, they’re finding ways to gain the upper hand on labor.”