The Antitrust Week In Review
Here are some of the developments in antitrust news this past week that we found interesting and are following.
Sutter Health to Settle Antitrust Lawsuit. A tentative settlement was announced on Wednesday in a case against Sutter Health, the sprawling hospital system in Northern California accused of anti-competitive behavior, just as the trial was to begin. The class-action lawsuit, which was brought by the California attorney general, Xavier Becerra, along with scores of employers and unions, accused Sutter of using its dominance in the region to corral insurers so that patients could not go elsewhere for less expensive or higher quality care. Sutter continues to face a federal antitrust lawsuit. “The class in the federal case will continue to push their claims toward resolution,” said Constantine Cannon’s Matthew L. Cantor, one of the attorneys involved in the class-action lawsuit.
Broadcom says EU antitrust order will not impact business, will challenge it. U.S. chipmaker Broadcom said on Wednesday that an EU antitrust order to halt certain business deals with six TV and modem makers will not have a material impact on its business and it will challenge the EU move in court. The European Commission earlier on Wednesday issued the order, the first issued against a company in 18 years, saying certain provisions in the deals could cause serious and irreparable harm to competition.
FTC gets mixed ruling from administrative judge in dental supply fight. An administrative law judge at the Federal Trade Commission has ruled that Benco Dental Supply Co. and Patterson Companies Inc. violated antitrust law by refusing to compete for the business of buying groups but dismissed a complaint against a third company, Henry Schein Inc., the agency said on Wednesday. The FTC had accused the three companies, the three largest U.S. full-service distributors of supplies ranging from chairs to cement to gloves, of violating antitrust law in February 2018. Judge Michael Chappell said in a decision dated Tuesday that “complaint Counsel (FTC) has shown that there was an agreement between Benco and Patterson to refuse to offer discounted prices or otherwise negotiate with buying groups. As held below, that agreement unreasonably restrained trade in the full-service dental distribution market in the United States.”