Robinson-Patman Act

News & Analysis as of

Soda bottler has bitter taste from alleged Pepsi price-fixing

A recent complaint charges PepsiCo Inc. with several antitrust violations, including price fixing and predatory pricing in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act, conspiracy and attempt to monopolize in violation of...more

7th Circuit Not Convinced That Bulk Packaging Constitutes a Promotional Service Under The Robinson-Patman Act

The Robinson-Patman Act (the “RPA” or the “Act”) is designed to ensure fair competition among purchasers. The Act separately addresses different forms of unlawful discrimination between competing purchasers — section 2(a)...more

Seventh Circuit Hears Argument in Clorox Appeal

This week, the Seventh Circuit heard argument in the Woodman’s Food Market v. Clorox Co. appeal. As members of our team have previously reported, this case concerns whether a plaintiff can state a claim under Section 2(e) of...more

February Antitrust Bulletin

“Comprehensive and Innovative” Antitrust Compliance Policy Results in Reduced Fine - On November 2, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio entered judgment against Kayaba Industry Co., Ltd....more

Morton Salt Presumption Of Injury Under Robinson-Patman Act

Plaintiffs and appellants, the disfavored purchasers in a Robinson-Patman Act case, were twenty-eight retail pharmacies who alleged that the pharmaceutical manufacturer defendants had charged them higher prices than those...more

Second Circuit tells pharmacies the antitrust claims they cooked up need more than a little Morton Salt

Cash & Henderson Drugs, Inc. v. Johnson & Johnson, recently decided by the Second Circuit, concerns Robinson-Patman Act claims that retail pharmacies brought against pharmaceutical manufacturers. The retail pharmacies alleged...more

FTC Rebukes Its Prior Robinson-Patman Rulings in Clorox Amicus Brief

Last week the Federal Trade Commission, in an amicus brief before the Seventh Circuit in Woodman’s Food Market, Inc. v. Clorox Co., rejected two decades-old FTC decisions applying Section 2(e) of the Robinson-Patman Act....more

October Antitrust Bulletin

On September 8, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit granted a motion filed by household products manufacturer Clorox for interlocutory appeal of two decisions by the U.S. District Court for the Western District...more

Discriminating Tastes: Court Puts Long-running Robinson-Patman Act Case To Rest

Described as the Rodney Dangerfield of the antitrust laws, the Robinson-Patman Act—which prohibits anticompetitive price discrimination—gets no respect. The Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission unapologetically...more

All Eyes on Woodman’s: Bulk Packaging as Promotional Services Under the RPA

Manufacturers of goods and their attorneys are keeping close watch on the case developing between Woodman's Markets and Clorox. At issue is a manufacturer's ability to use large-packaged goods to work around the price...more

AlarMax’s Robinson-Patman Claims Against Honeywell Survive

AlarMax Distributors Inc. may pursue price discrimination claims under the Robinson-Patman Act (RPA) against Honeywell International Inc., a federal judge in Pennsylvania ruled last week. Fire and security product distributor...more

June Antitrust Bulletin

Two recent decisions by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin reached back decades for precedent to allow a novel price discrimination suit under the Robinson-Patman Act to proceed. Woodman’s Food...more

Revised “Fred Meyer Guides” Leave Treatment of Key Robinson-Patman Act Provisions Unchanged

While hardly ever enforced in modern times by government enforcement agencies, and rarely the subject of antitrust treble damage actions, Sections 2(d) and (e) of the Robinson Patman Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 13(d) and (e)) have had...more

Court Allows Price Discrimination Lawsuit Over Bulk Sales to Survive

On February 2, 2015, a federal judge denied a motion to dismiss a claim that Clorox’s proposed policy of providing only large bulk-size packages of products to warehouse clubs, like Sam’s Club and Costco, and not to competing...more

Best in Law: What Businesses Need to Know on Antitrust Law

There is a saying among antitrust lawyers: Don’t say you “won” an antitrust lawsuit — just by being in one means you lost. Business litigation is almost always expensive and challenging. Antitrust litigation can be several...more

Amended Fred Meyer Guides Account for Rise of Online Business, Otherwise Remain Largely Unchanged

On November 10, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) first amendments in 20 years to the so-called Fred Meyer Guides will take effect. The Guides give direction to manufacturers, wholesalers and other suppliers seeking...more

Local Wholesaler-Retailer Dispute Has Federal Implications

On August 14, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi issued an opinion finding that state regulations bolstered one antitrust claim and hindered another in an ongoing dispute between a northern...more

Promotional Allowances in a New Retail Environment: FTC Revises its Fred Meyer Guides

The Commission revised its guidelines for interpreting and complying with the Robinson-Patman Act to account for changes in technology and methods of marketing that have taken place since the last revision in 1990, including...more

The Federal Trade Commission Updates its “Guides for Advertising Allowances and Other Merchandising Payments and Services”: Still...

Although infrequently finding itself front and center in case law and legal developments, the Robinson-Patman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 13 (the “Act”) from time to time resurfaces. The Act prohibits discrimination in prices charged,...more

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same - Key Takeaways from the FTC’s “Updated” Fred Meyer Guides

THE FTC ISSUES AMENDED FRED MEYER GUIDES - On September 24, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved final amendments to the Fred Meyer Guides (“Guides”). The Guides are intended to help businesses comply with...more

Top Components of Effective Antitrust Corporate Compliance Programs, Part 2

Last week we posted a discussion concerning effective antitrust corporate compliance programs, and provided some factors that in-house counsel should consider in developing compliance programs governing employees’...more

District Court Pares Down Price Discrimination Suit Against Chrysler

On July 11, 2014, the Northern District of California dismissed one of two federal antitrust claims brought against Chrysler Group LLC under the Robinson-Patman Act, 15 U.S. C. § 13, as well as several state statutory and...more

Florida Acknowledges Exemption For Intracompany Sales Of Pharmaceuticals

A new declaratory statement from Florida regulators clarifies the restrictions on intracompany sales of pharmaceuticals. Previously, if one pharmacy in Florida wanted to send a bottle of prescription medicine to its sister...more

Disfavored Purchaser Loses Robinson-Patman Act and Sherman Act Section 1 Claims Against Favored Buyer

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion on a rare legal issue: buyer liability for violations of the Robinson-Patman Act. Gorlick Distribution Centers, LLC v. Car Sound Exhaust System, Inc., No. 10-36083...more

Auto Parts Distributor Avoids Liability In Robinson-Patman Suit

On July 19, 2013, the Ninth Circuit affirmed an award of summary judgment to an aftermarket auto parts distributor that had received better prices than a competitor. Gorlick Distribution Centers, LLC v. Car Sound Exhaust...more

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