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New York Times  5 hrs ago  Comment 
The cases, one criminal and the other civil, involved an international cartel’s price-fixing of liquid-crystal displays used in computers and cellphones.
Financial Times  Jun 15  Comment 
Antitrust chief challenges industry argument that mergers are needed to spur investment
New York Times  Jun 12  Comment 
The investigation is the latest hurdle for Amazon and other American tech giants as European policy makers pursue antitrust, tax and other inquiries.
News.com.au  Jun 11  Comment 
AMAZON facing antitrust probe into e-books, oil demand soars, and California urged to reopen kangaroo skin imports.
NPR  Jun 11  Comment 
Investigators want to know if music companies are colluding with subscription services such as Apple Music to squeeze out free, ad-supported streaming.
New York Times  Jun 11  Comment 
The investigation is the latest hurdle for Amazon and other American tech giants as European policy makers pursue antitrust, tax and other inquiries.
Forbes  Jun 10  Comment 
The college athletes' rights movement suffered a much anticipated loss last week when the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee dismissed the claims of eight former college football players in Marshall v. ESPN -- one of the...
TechCrunch  Jun 10  Comment 
 U.K. search comparison service Foundem, one of the long time complainants in the E.U.’s antitrust investigation into Google Shopping, has published a rebuttal of Google’s claims that rival comparison services are “thriving”. Click...
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Yahoo  Jun 10  Comment 
The attorneys general want to know whether music labels colluded or were pressured into favoring Apple's paid music subscription service, which was released on Monday. Apple launched Apple Music on Monday, a $9.99-a-month streaming music service...




 
TOP CONTRIBUTORS


US antitrust legislation or "competition law" focuses on three kinds of activity discouraging to competition: monopoly, mergers and acquisitions (M&A), and price fixing.

Monopolies and M&A are both regulated to keep companies from becoming too large or powerful within a single or a few industry sectors. M&A activity is particularly worth noting: many industries have been undergoing a phase of general consolidation in the past few years, and U.S. M&A activity has risen more than 31% since 2005 (2006 saw more than US$ 1.5 trillion's worth of activity). Price fixing is also carefully watched to prevent some companies from gaining an "unfair" advantage; antritrust lawsuits in this category tend to target cartels (groups of nominally independent companies that try to artificially establish relatively high prices by agreement across a number of market players).

U.S. Democrats are traditionally harder on antitrust than their Republican counterparts, and the 2008 presidential election will play an important part in determining the strength of the next round of antitrust legislation. In naming his new attorney general and head of the Federal Trade Commission, the new president will heavily influence the political leanings of the two departments with the most control over the outcome of antitrust lawsuits: the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission.

Antitrust Losers

  • TXU and other large utility companies are at risk of antitrust lawsuits for various price-fixing or merger/acquisitions practices. The utilities sector is a particularly common antiturst target because of the high fixed costs/barrier to entry.
    • Telephony/communications, oil, chemicals manufacturing, banking, and cable industries are also strongly at risk for antitrust lawsuits.
  • Microsoft, Apple, and recently even Google are examples of companies that are dominant enough in an industry that any further merger/acquisitions activity is immediately under antitrust activity.

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Antitrust Winners

Legal and economic advisory firms like FTI Consulting, LECG, CRA International, Navigant Consulting, and Huron Consulting Group stand to benefit in all antitrust cases, as they assist parties on both sides by providing trial support services and expert testimony.

To Be Determined

  • XM and Sirius entered into a merger agreement in March 2007 which would leave only one company in the U.S. satellite radio business. Given that neither company has ever generated positive income, a combined company would likely eliminate overlapping costs and optimize operating efficiency. The companies argue against anti-trust worries, claiming their merged company would face heavy competition from traditional radio companies such as Clear Channel Communications (CCU) and CBS (CBS) as well as other audio options for consumers, such as iPods. It wasn't until July 29, 2008, that the two parent companies were able to have completed the long awaited merger. This meant that Sirius Satellite Radio had completed its acquisition of XM Satellite Radio and combining the two radio services to create a single satellite radio network in the United States.This merger brought the combined companies an approximate total of more than 18.5 million subscribers based on current subscriber numbers on the date of merging.
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