Federal Trade Commission bans non-compete agreements

Employers use non-compete agreements to prevent workers leaving: it's hard to quit when you can't get a new job in the same field. Cleaning up a patchwork of state-level regulations and limitations on the practice, the FTC yesterday prohibited them outright.

Within hours of the vote, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said it would sue to block "this unnecessary and unlawful rule and put other agencies on notice that such overreach will not go unchecked." The new rule would "undermine American businesses' ability to remain competitive," the trade group, which advocates for U.S. corporations and businesses, said in a statement.

It's funny that the chamber itself poses "competition" as a right that businesses depend upon that workers must explicitly not themselves enjoy. That old saw about "socialism for companies and capitalism for the workers" was always wrong: a free market is the last thing they want employees to have.