Welcome to the Capital Note, a newsletter about business, finance, and economics. On the menu today: France fines Google, an hour-long web outage, bearish Bitcoin, and a primer on digital-ad exchanges. To sign up for the Capital Note, follow this link.
Google’s Antitrust Settlement
Yesterday, Google agreed to pay a $270 million fine to French regulators for alleged abuse of its power in the online-advertising market. While the fine itself is nominal, it marks the first major regulatory action targeting Google’s opaque ad marketplace, in which Google plays the role of both broker and seller.
The case surrounds the tech giant’s two-sided ad exchange, which connects buyers and sellers of digital ads. Google Ad Manager connects online publishers selling ad space with brands buying it. The problem: Google itself is one of the largest sellers of ad space on its search engine and YouTube, among other