Consumer protection (81 - 90 of 177 items)
Electricity Markets: FERC's Role in Protecting Consumers
GAO-03-726R: Published: Jun 6, 2003. Publicly Released: Jun 27, 2003.
The electricity industry is currently undergoing a restructuring, evolving from an industry characterized by monopoly utilities that provide consumers with electricity at regulated rates to a competitive industry in which prices are largely determined by supply and demand. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has been engaged in this restructuring effort and is currently working, among...
Insurance Regulation: Preliminary Views on States' Oversight of Insurers' Market Behavior
GAO-03-738T: Published: May 6, 2003. Publicly Released: May 6, 2003.
This testimony provides information on two important tools state insurance regulators use to oversee the market activities of insurance companies--market analysis and market conduct examinations. Market analysis is generallly done in the state insurance departments. It consists of gathering and integrating information about insurance companies' operations in order to monitor market behavior and id...
Federal Trade Commission: Study Needed to Assess the Effects of Recent Divestitures on Competition in Retail Markets
GAO-02-793: Published: Sep 25, 2002. Publicly Released: Sep 25, 2002.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) seeks to prevent business practices that are anticompetitive, deceptive, or unfair to consumers. If FTC determines that a merger may harm competition in the marketplace, the agency may decide to block the merger or select a remedy that addresses the anticompetitive problems it has identified. FTC's preferred remedy is divestiture--the selling of a business or ass...
State Insurance Regulation: Efforts to Streamline Key Licensing and Approval Processes Face Challenges
GAO-02-842T: Published: Jun 18, 2002. Publicly Released: Jun 18, 2002.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), through its Accreditation Program, has made considerable progress in achieving uniformity among state insurance regulators. In addition, competitive pressures from further consolidation in the financial services sector and enactment of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act has focused attention on regulator reforms in the insurance industry. NAIC's...
Federal Trade Commission: Enforcement of the Franchise Rule
GAO-01-776: Published: Jul 31, 2001. Publicly Released: Jul 31, 2001.
Franchises are business arrangements that require payment for the opportunity to sell trademarked goods and services. Business opportunity ventures do not involve a trademark, but require payment for the opportunity to distribute goods or services with assistance in the form of locations or accounts. The Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) Trade Regulation Rule on Franchising and Business Opportunity...
Consumer Protection: Federal Actions to Oversee the Household Goods Moving Industry Are Unlikely to Have Immediate Impact
GAO-01-819T: Published: Jul 12, 2001. Publicly Released: Jul 12, 2001.
Consumer complaints against household good carriers have soared in the last five years, yet the Department of Transportation (DOT) has done little to oversee the industry. Although DOT does not collect nationwide information on consumer complaints against household good movers, it estimates that it receives about 4,000 complaints each year. Consumer protection in the interstate household goods mov...
Consumer Protection: Federal Actions Are Needed to Improve Oversight of the Household Goods Moving Industry
GAO-01-318: Published: Mar 5, 2001. Publicly Released: Mar 5, 2001.
For moving services, the primary responsibility for consumer protection lies with consumers to select a reputable household goods carrier, ensure that they understand the terms and conditions of the contracts, and understand and pursue the remedies that are available to them when problems arise. Available information indicates that consumer complaints in the household goods industry are increasing...
Food Safety: Federal Oversight of Seafood Does Not Sufficiently Protect Consumers
GAO-01-204: Published: Jan 31, 2001. Publicly Released: Feb 13, 2001.
Since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point system (HACCP) regulations for seafood, the food industry has made some progress in ensuring the safety of seafood. However, several important weaknesses compromise the overall effectiveness of the federal seafood safety system. If left uncorrected, they will continue to undermine the goal of HACCP s...
Internet: Federal Web-based Complaint Handling
AIMD-00-238R: Published: Jul 7, 2000. Publicly Released: Aug 8, 2000.
Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the use of the Internet to facilitate the submission and resolution of federal customer complaints, focusing on the: (1) type and extent of web-based complaint mechanisms provided by 32 federal agencies which handle 90 percent of the federal government's contact with the public; and (2) status of two federal efforts to develop centra...
Federal Trade Commission: Privacy of Consumer Financial Information
OGC-00-40: Published: Jun 23, 2000. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2000.
Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) major rule on the privacy of consumer financial information. GAO noted that: (1) the final rule implements notice requirements and restrictions on a financial institution's ability to disclose nonpublic personal information about consumers to nonaffiliated third parties; (2) the final rule prohibits a financia...