Are Residential Local Exchange Prices Too Low?
Nearly five years after passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (“the Act”)1 there is still widespread debate about the status and extent of competition in the local exchange market and whether the Act has succeeded or failed in one of its intended goals—the fostering of local exchange competition. While a consensus appears to have emerged that competition for certain types of customers—large business customers in dense metropolitan areas—is beginning to take hold, no such consensus exists for other types of customers.2 Specifically, policymakers are asking when they will begin to see a consensus emerge that competition is taking hold for: (i) smaller business customers located in non-urban, rural areas; and (ii) residential customers.
KeywordsLocal Exchange Federal Communication Commission Local Competition Universal Service Business Customer
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