This afternoon, the President convened the White House Competition Council to discuss the significant progress made toward lowering costs for the American people thanks to his Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy. The Council also discussed plans for further action in the coming weeks, months, and years. The Competition Council drives the Administration’s whole-of-government effort to restore competition and coordinate progress on the Executive Order’s 72 initiatives, delivering concrete benefits of increased competition to America’s consumers, workers, farmers, and small businesses.
The President commended Council members for taking up his call to action to address exorbitant junk fees in a variety of industries, announced new steps by his Administration, and urged more action to address these hidden, surprise fees that hit the most vulnerable Americans the hardest. Today’s announcements include:
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a proposed rule that would lower the amount credit card companies can charge in late fees. Currently, 18 out of 20 major credit card issuers charge the maximum late fee allowed, which is $30 for the first late payment and $41 for a subsequent late payment. The proposed rule would lower that fee to less than $10 for a majority of credit cards. The CFPB estimates that this proposed rule, if made final, could save Americans $9 billion in fees.
- The President called on Congress to take action to address some of the most persistent and unfair fees that Americans face by passing a Junk Fee Prevention Act, which would:
- Crack down on excessive online concert, sporting event, and other entertainment ticket fees.
- Ban airline fees for family members to sit with young children.
- Eliminate exorbitant early termination fees for TV, phone, and internet service.
- Ban surprise resort and destination fees.
The Council members used the rest of the meeting to discuss strategic priorities for the first half of the year and additional actions expected in the coming months, including how the Council can continue to institutionalize the President’s competition agenda in each agency and deliver cost saving measures for Americans.
Participants in today’s meeting included:
- Brian Deese, Assistant to the President and Director of the National Economic Council (Chair)
- Merrick Garland, Attorney General
- Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture
- Xavier Becerra, Secretary of Health and Human Services
- Pete Buttigieg, Secretary of Transportation
- Cecilia Rouse, Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors
- Wally Adeyemo, Deputy Secretary of the Treasury
- Kathleen Hicks, Deputy Secretary of Defense
- Don Graves, Deputy Secretary of Commerce
- Julie Su, Deputy Secretary of Labor
- Rohit Chopra, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
- Lina Khan, Chair of the Federal Trade Commission
- Jessica Rosenworcel, Chair of the Federal Communications Commission
- Gary Gensler, Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission
- Daniel Maffei, Chair of the Federal Maritime Commission
- Rostin Behnam, Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission
- Marty Oberman, Chair of the Surface Transportation Board
- Richard Revesz, Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs