Price-Fixing

News & Analysis as of

Can Computers Conspire to Fix Prices?

Strange as it sounds, maybe we’re getting closer to the day we have to seriously consider liability for computer conspiracies. On April 6, David Topkins, a former executive of an e-commerce seller of posters, prints and...more

Supreme Court Finds No Pre-emption in Natural Gas Act Case

The U.S. Supreme Court recently held in ONEOK Inc. v. Learjet, Inc., that the Natural Gas Act (NGA) does not pre-empt state-law antitrust suits over manipulation of natural gas indices. The court’s decision has important...more

Antitrust & Competition Newsletter - April 2015

U.S. Supreme Court Holds That State Action Immunity Does Not Apply to State Boards If the Board Is Controlled by Active Market Participants - On Feb. 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court held, in a 6-3 decision, that a state...more

Supreme Court’s Holding in Oneok v. Learjet Could Lead to New Risks for Market Participants

On April 21, 2015, the Supreme Court decided Oneok v. Learjet, holding that “Respondents’ state-law antitrust claims are not within the field of matters pre-empted by the Natural Gas Act” even though the claimed violations...more

Supreme Court Preserves States' Power to Protect Consumers But in the Process Blurs Federal Preemption Analysis

The Supreme Court once again showed that, when it comes to the antitrust laws, the consumer is king. In Oneok, Inc. v. Learjet, the Court was asked to decide where state antitrust laws end and federal regulation begins. The...more

Supreme Court Rejects Pre-Emption Claim in State Antitrust Action

On April 21, 2015, the Supreme Court issued a divided opinion declining to find federal pre-emption by the Natural Gas Act (NGA) of certain state antitrust claims. In Oneok, Inc. v. Learjet, Inc., a group of manufacturers,...more

ONEOK, Inc. v. Learjet, Inc.: The Supreme Court Holds that Natural Gas Jurisdictional Sellers are Subject to State Antitrust...

On April 21, 2015, the Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in ONEOK Inc. v. Learjet, Inc. addressing the extent to which the Natural Gas Act (“NGA”) preempts state antitrust claims brought against...more

E-Retailers Beware: DOJ Files First Criminal Prosecution for Online Price Fixing

The Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice recently announced its first criminal antitrust prosecution in e-commerce. David Topkins was charged on April 6, 2015, with price fixing in violation of Section 1 of...more

Third Circuit to Plaintiffs’ Bar: Expert Testimony Necessary for Certification Must Satisfy Daubert

Plaintiff purchasers of traditional blood reagents, products that test the compatibility of donor blood with recipients, brought putative class actions claiming that two defendant companies conspired to fix prices in...more

First E-commerce Price Fixing Prosecution Yields Swift Guilty Plea

In what it is calling the Antitrust Division’s “first criminal prosecution against a conspiracy specifically targeting e-commerce,” the Department of Justice has announced that an individual has agreed to plead guilty to...more

Third Circuit Remands Class Certification Ruling in Blood Reagents Price-Fixing Case

On Wednesday, April 8, 2015, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a district court’s order certifying a class of direct purchasers of blood reagents in a price-fixing suit against Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics Inc. In re...more

Third Circuit Weighs In On Application Of Daubert At Class Certification Stage

Since the Supreme Court’s decision in Comcast v. Behrend, 113 S. Ct. 1426 (2013) courts evaluating expert testimony at the class certification stage may not simply accept that testimony at face value. The Supreme Court did...more

Seventh Circuit Upholds Dismissal of Text Messaging Price-Fixing Claims

On Thursday, April 9, 2015, the Seventh Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for AT&T Mobility LLC, Verizon Wireless LLC, T-Mobile USA Inc. and Sprint Corp., in a text messaging price-fixing...more

China Ripe For Enforcing AML Based On Concerted Action

So far in China there have not been any published decisions regarding price-fixing or other anti-competitive agreements based on concerted action by competitors. There is also no Chinese legal precedent for including...more

Department of Justice's Antitrust Division Brings First E-Commerce Prosecution

Marking a foray into e-commerce, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced its first antitrust prosecution for price fixing in online marketplaces. On April 6, 2015, the DOJ announced that it has...more

Department of Justice Antitrust Division Charges Former E-Commerce Executive with Price-Fixing in First Ever Online Marketplace...

On April 6, 2015, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division announced that David Topkins, a former executive of an e-commerce seller of wall décor, had pled guilty to a one-count felony charge for conspiring to fix the...more

Shipping Executive Pleads Guilty to Ocean-Shipping Price Fixing Conspiracy

On Tuesday, March 10, 2015, an employee of the Japan-based Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) pleaded guilty to a violation of the Sherman Act for conspiring to fix prices and rig bids for international ocean shipping from...more

Parking Heater Manufacturer Pleads Guilty to Price-Fixing

On March 12, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that Espar Inc., pleaded guilty to one count of price-fixing under the Sherman Act in a scheme involving parking heaters for commercial vehicles that ran from...more

Insurer’s Agreements with Providers Are Not Per Se Antitrust Violations

The Iowa Supreme Court refused to categorize a health insurer’s agreements with providers in Iowa and its participation in the national Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) network as per se violations of the antitrust laws. ...more

California Joins Whistleblower Lawsuit Against BP

The state of California jumped aboard a whistleblower lawsuit in progress against BP Plc, alleging that BP had overcharged the state by up to approximately $300 million for nearly a decade for natural gas. The plaintiffs in...more

Global Cartel Practice: Accused in Canadian Price-Fixing Investigation Have a Right to Information Obtained Under the Competition...

On February 4, 2015, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled in R. v. Nestle Canada Inc., that accused parties have a right to information proffered to the Canadian Competition Bureau during the course of a price-fixing...more

Court of Justice of the European Union Rejects the Appeal of Italian National Extradited to the United States for Price-Fixing...

On February 9, the Court of Justice of the European Union made public its January 28, 2015 order rejecting the appeal of Mr. Romano Pisciotti, an Italian national who was extradited from Germany to the United States in April...more

Seventh Circuit Denies Rehearing in LCD Price-Fixing Suit by Motorola

On January 12, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals refused Motorola Mobility LLC’s petition for a rehearing en banc of its price-fixing claims against foreign manufacturers of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels. Motorola...more

Are Antitrust Compliance Programs Protected by Attorney-Client Privilege?

We’ve previously written about the components of effective antitrust compliance programs and the potential benefits corporations may achieve by adopting them. In drafting compliance programs, however, corporations should be...more

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Natural Gas Case in which 21 State AGs File Brief

On Monday, January 12, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral argument in the preemption case, Oneok v. Learjet. In reliance on state law private action remedies, Learjet sued Oneok over market manipulation in natural gas...more

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