What is the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)?
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an agency of the United States government which focuses on promoting a competitive market and protecting consumers from false advertising and unfair business practices. The FTC establishes trade rules which the relevant industries must abide by, and can bring suit in Federal court against offenders who violate trade rules or Federal law. The primary focus of the FTC is regulating interstate commerce. The agency, founded in 1915, is headed by five commissioners and headquartered in Washington, D.C. Although the FTC cannot punish offenders directly, it can issue orders of compliance and ultimately sue businesses which continue to flout trade rules. Numerous measures are undertaken to ensure a fair and free market. The FTC reviews potential major business mergers, for example, to make sure that the merger will not form a monopoly or dominate the market for that particular product or service. The FTC also regulates advertising, and heavily prosecutes b