Tag Archives: Price Fixing

Is Big Chicken Cooked? DOJ Intervenes in Price-Fixing Investigation

Pork is the other white meat, beef is what’s for dinner, and chicken is now under investigation by the Department of Justice for possible antitrust violations. Looks like the DOJ is back in the criminal cartel investigation business. In June, the DOJ intervened in a class action antitrust lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court … Continue Reading

Collusion Course: The Limits of Hot Documents

Discovery in antitrust cases often involves a search for smoking-gun documents. Those documents can consist of emails proving that competitors conspired to raise prices, removing the difficulties faced by prosecutors or civil plaintiffs in proving actual injury to competition. Such precious nuggets lead inexorably to near-automatic liability for the defendants. But what if the nugget … Continue Reading

FTC Aggressively Pressing ‘Antitrust Trumps IP’ Theme

The Federal Trade Commission has recently brought its considerable institutional weight to bear in two developing areas at the intersection of unfair competition and intellectual property law. Continuing its crusade against “reverse-payment” patent infringement settlements in the pharmaceuticals sector, the FTC is promoting—especially in the Third Circuit—a maximalist interpretation of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013 … Continue Reading

BakerHostetler Antitrust Lawyer Co-Authors Book on Price Fixing

BakerHostetler Partner Lee Simowitz has co-authored The Executive’s Antitrust Guide to Pricing: Understanding Implications of Typical Marketing, Distribution, and Pricing Practices (Thomson Reuters/Aspatore 2013). Written as a practical guide for business professionals, the guide answers the most common antitrust pricing questions facing C-Level executives, marketing heads, and salespeople in straightforward, easy to understand language. The book … Continue Reading

LIBOR Going Forward: How Will Dismissal of Antitrust Claims Affect Investigations and Private Claims?

We recently wrote about the dismissal of the plaintiffs’ antitrust claims against banks involved in the LIBOR manipulation scandal for failure to allege an antitrust injury.  Since that dismissal, the court has granted plaintiffs leave to move to amend their complaints, although the court openly questioned whether the plaintiffs’ proposed amendments cured the defects in … Continue Reading

Where (and What) Is the Harm?

Antitrust claims in LIBOR manipulation cases dismissed for lack of antitrust injury. The recent LIBOR suppression scandal has given rise to numerous lawsuits, both individual and putative class actions based on several theories of recovery, that have been consolidated in the Southern District of New York.  LIBOR is calculated by averaging certain British Banking Association … Continue Reading

Is It Ever Okay to Exchange Competitively Sensitive, Nonpublic Information with a Competitor?

  Rarely, according to a recent Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) enforcement action against two nationally known hair restoration businesses—Bosley and Hair Club.  However, before you start chatting up your competitor for information, pick up the phone and call your lawyer for advice.   So, what got Bosley and Hair Club clipped?  For more than four … Continue Reading

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200: Michigan Statute and Regulatory Order Banning MFN Provisions in Provider Contracts Ends Government Antitrust Lawsuit Against Michigan Blue

In the wake of the passage of a Michigan statute and regulatory order banning the use of most favored nation (“MFN”) clauses by insurers, health maintenance organizations, and nonprofit health care corporations in contracts with providers, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division (“DOJ”), the State of Michigan, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (“Michigan … Continue Reading

Oklahoma, OK and Not OK: The Right and Wrong Paths to Provider Joint Contracting

In the view of the FTC and the Justice Department, competing health care providers can contract jointly with third-party payers only if the providers integrate clinically (or financially) so that gains in efficiency and quality of care counterbalance any resulting price increases.  The FTC has filled in the blanks as to what constitutes adequate clinical … Continue Reading

When Will They Learn? Doctors Continue to Face Antitrust Charges for Jointly Negotiating Contracts without Clinical or Financial Integration

Legitimate joint marketing and selling arrangements have the potential to produce efficiencies.  This is particularly so, for example, where the arrangement enables the participants to make or market products that they could not do alone.  The Antitrust Guidelines for Collaborations among Competitors, Statements of Antitrust Enforcement Policy in Health Care, as well as scores of … Continue Reading

Burn Before Reading: Hot Documents and Antitrust Claims

Antitrust law and economics seem like dark arts to outsiders, an impression that antitrust lawyers are none too eager to dispel.  But everyone can appreciate a smoking gun document that seems to brand its author as a hardened violator of the antitrust laws.  Consider the memorandum written by a large waste-disposal company about a small … Continue Reading

I Don’t Care How Much I Pay (too Much, the Magic Bus)* – Part II

Apparently, Mary Hanson, Tracey Nobel, Stefanie Nocera and the class they hope to represent do! In a prior post, we noted that the U.S. Department of Justice and State of New York filed an antitrust complaint that seeks to unwind a joint venture formed in 2009 by two competing tour bus operators in New York … Continue Reading

I Don’t Care How Much I Pay (too Much, the Magic Bus)*

DOJ and New York sue to restore tour bus competition Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice and State of New York filed an antitrust complaint that seeks to unwind a joint venture formed in 2009 by two competing tour bus operators in New York City.  The tour bus operators supposedly accounted for about 99 … Continue Reading
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