The Federal Trade Commission has terminated a 1971 consent order against Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. The order settled allegations that Goodyear and several other tire companies (The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company, Uniroyal, Inc., The B. F. Goodrich Company, and The General Tire & Rubber Company) violated antitrust laws by hindering competition in the sale and leasing of special mileage commercial tires to transit companies, and by allocating transit company customers among themselves. The Commission terminated the order against Goodyear in accordance with its "sunsetting" policy, under which the Commission presumes, in the context of petitions to reopen and modify existing competition orders, that the public interest requires terminating orders that have been in effect for more than 20 years.
Goodyear is based in Akron, Ohio.
The Commission terminated the order as it pertains to Goodyear, the only respondent that petitioned the FTC to reopen and set aside the order. The Commission vote to do so was 5-0, with Commissioner Mary L. Azcuenaga issuing a concurring statement.
In a separate concurring statement, Commissioner Mary L. Azcuenaga said that although she concurs in the decision to grant Goodyear's request to set aside the 1971 order, she dissents from the decision to limit setting the order aside as to Goodyear instead of setting aside the order in its entirety. According to Azcuenaga, the decision to grant the relief to Goodyear and deny it to the other four respondents appears to be inconsistent with recent precedent and with the Commission's announced Sunset Policy where it is presumed "that the public interest requires reopening and setting aside the order in its entirety ... when a petition to reopen and modify a competition order is filed" and the order is more than 20 years old. The "burden on public and private resources" is increased "by applying the presumption in favor of sunset not only on a case-by-case basis but on a respondent-by-respondent basis," Azcuenaga concluded.
Copies of the Commission's order, as well as other documents associated with the case, are available from the FTC's Public Reference Branch, Room 130, 6th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580.
(FTC Docket No. C-1957)