This Week in Ridiculous Regulations


The European Union fined Google a record $5 billion for antitrust violations, and the president raised foreign policy kerfuffles with Britain and Russia on his European trip. Getting less coverage were more than 60 new final regulations ranging from gasoline vapors to payphones.

On to the data:

  • Last week, 62 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 51 the previous week.
  • That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every three hours and 4 minutes.
  • Federal agencies have issued 1,844 final regulations in 2018. At that pace, there will be 3,293 new final regulations. Last year’s total was 3,236 regulations.
  • Last week, 1,993 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 11,115 pages the previous week.
  • The 2018 Federal Register totals 34,690 pages. It is on pace for 61,947 pages. The all-time record adjusted page count (which subtracts skips, jumps, and blank pages) is 96,994, set in 2016.
  • Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. Three such rules have been published this year, none in the last week.
  • The running compliance cost tally for 2018’s economically significant regulations is $319.1 million.
  • Agencies have published 65 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” so far this year.
  • In 2018, 307 new rules affect small businesses; 16 of them are classified as significant. 

Highlights from selected final rules published last week:

For more data, see Ten Thousand Commandments and follow @10KC and @RegoftheDay on Twitter.