Recently, we took a new look at an old and fairly common practice among businesses that ostensibly compete with each other. And it did not look good. In fact, it looked a lot like price-fixing. But not by the usual suspects.
Here is the common practice, and its backdrop, and we’ve all seen it over and over again with class action plaintiffs’ lawyers, including multiple times in the last few months and as recently as last week. Libor. Electronic Books. Aluminum Warehousing. Silver Futures. North Sea Brent Crude. Cast Iron Soil Pipe. A government price-fixing investigation becomes public knowledge. Maybe the U.S. Department of Justice confirms that it is conducting an investigation of a certain industry or the major producers announce they are under investigation or a news outlet breaks the story.
Originally published in Law 360 on May 28, 2014.
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