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Rough Regulatory Waters May Rock Massive Shipping Alliance

Posted  12/11/13
By Jeffrey I. Shinder The proposed P3 shipping alliance among the world’s three biggest container shipping companies encountered more rough seas this past week. The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (“FMC”) has requested additional information from the parties.  This request will delay the implementation of the proposed alliance because, after the parties comply with the request, a new 45-day regulatory...

Cargo Shipping Companies’ Price Signaling Could Run Aground In EU Probe

Posted  11/27/13
By Jeffrey I. Shinder The steady stream of cartel investigations and lawsuits on both sides of the Atlantic in recent months highlights the need for vigilant antitrust enforcement to protect consumer welfare, despite the views of those, like the Wall Street Journal editorial page, who question the wisdom of antitrust law. These alleged cartels range from the apparently venal manipulations of the financial...

Vitamin C Makers Seek Boost From Former Chinese Official In Price-Fixing Trial

Posted  03/13/13
Vitamin C manufacturers currently on trial in federal court in Brooklyn are hoping their defense to price-fixing claims will get a boost from last week’s testimony by a former Chinese government official that China compelled them to engage in allegedly anticompetitive behavior. Plaintiffs in the class action In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation are seeking to convince a jury in the U.S. District Court for the...

Drywall Manufacturers Accused Of Constructing Price-Fixing Facade

Posted  02/19/13
Eight of the largest drywall manufacturers in the United States are facing three antitrust complaints that allege price fixing and other anticompetitive coordination have harmed homebuilders and other direct purchasers of drywall. Defendants include CertainTeed Corp., Georgia-Pacific LLC, USG Corp., United States Gypsum Co., New NGC, Inc., LaFarge North America Inc., American Gypsum Co. LLC, TIN Inc. and PABCO...

Court Certifies Chocolate Antitrust Class Action

Posted  01/24/13
A federal judge has certified a class action alleging that The Hershey Company, Mars Inc., and Nestlé U.S. A., Inc. fixed chocolate prices and inflated the prices of chocolate candy starting in 2002. The class action is being brought on behalf of 2,900 wholesalers, grocery stores, and other businesses that directly purchase chocolate from the three companies.  The alleged price-fixing conspiracy has resulted in...

Court Finds Musical Instrument Antitrust Claims Out Of Tune Under Twombly

Posted  09/18/12
Judge Larry Burns of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California has granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ antitrust claim under Section One of the Sherman Act in In re: National Association of Music Merchants, Musical Instruments and Equipment Antitrust Litigation. The plaintiffs alleged that defendants conspired to fix the prices of acoustic, electric and bass guitars, and...

Penguin’s Motion To Compel Arbitration Doesn’t Fly In eBooks Case

Posted  07/11/12
A federal judge in the Southern District of New York has shot down a motion to compel arbitration filed by Penguin Group (USA), Inc. in the widely-followed case of In re: Electronic Books Antitrust Litigation. Plaintiffs allege that Penguin and other book publishers violated the antitrust laws by conspiring to fix and raise prices for eBooks.  Penguin moved the court to stay the proceedings and compel arbitration...

Kansas Supreme Court Beefs Up Antitrust Scrutiny Of Resale Price Maintenance

Posted  05/17/12
Resale price maintenance policies that pass muster under federal antitrust law may not survive state antitrust scrutiny in Kansas, according to that state’s highest court. The Kansas Supreme Court has overturned a lower court's decision granting defendant handbag and accessory maker Leegin Creative Leather Products, Inc. summary judgment in a state antitrust suit brought by a class of consumers challenging...

Pacific Seafood Off The Hook In Fishermen Antitrust Litigation

Posted  04/19/12
Commercial fishing vessel owners and fishermen have settled a $520 million claim for damages against Pacific Seafood Group just two months after Judge Owen M. Panner of the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon granted class certification in Whaley et al. v. Pacific Seafood Group et al. Plaintiffs alleged that the defendants, Pacific Seafood Group and Ocean Gold Seafoods, Inc., fixed prices in buying fish,...

Indirect Purchasers’ Claims Undermined In Mineral Price-Fixing Litigation

Posted  04/17/12
Judge Dickinson R. Debevoise of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey has dismissed class action claims of price fixing brought by indirect purchasers against several magnesium oxide companies in the case of In re Magnesium Oxide Antitrust Litigation. The court also ruled, however, that the price fixing claims brought by the direct purchaser plaintiffs, Orangeburg Milling Company, Inc., Bar Ale,...
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