RECENT NEWS
New York Times  Jul 18  Comment 
The Competition and Markets Authority is concerned about the concentration of retail banking and potential barriers for new entrants into the market.
MarketWatch  Jul 18  Comment 
Foreign luxury-car makers -- including Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz -- may become the targets of China's ongoing antitrust campaign, a Chinese state-media report said Friday. The country's top anti-trust authority, the Price Supervision and...
SeekingAlpha  Jul 17  Comment 
By Night Owl Investor: In processing the events surrounding the Lorillard, Inc. (NYSE:LO) acquisition by Reynolds American, Inc. (NYSE:RAI), it seems as if the market didn't necessarily agree that this was considered a "done deal." I tried to find...
Wall Street Journal  Jul 16  Comment 
Apple has agreed to pay as much as $400 million to settle a civil class-action lawsuit related to the pricing of e-books, contingent on the consumer electronics giant's appeal of last year's antitrust case.
Clusterstock  Jul 16  Comment 
Multiple antitrust experts told Business Insider federal regulators will almost certainly have their eye on any deal for Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox to buy Time Warner. "I'm sure regulators will take a close look at this," said Scott...
Forbes  Jul 16  Comment 
Every corporation wants to dominate its industry. It is what pushes mergers, the hiring of new executives, the reshuffling of management and even substantial changes to a company’s business model. All of these things are done in the furtherance...
newratings.com  Jul 16  Comment 
LONDON (dpa-AFX) - Royal Mail Plc (RMG.L), in its statement on French competition authority investigation into alleged antitrust law breaches in France, said that it is currently considering a notice received from the French regulator. Given the...
Forbes  Jul 15  Comment 
In any other industry, the merger of the No. 2 and No. 3 competitors would raise serious antitrust concerns, but tobacco isn't your typical industry.
Forbes  Jul 14  Comment 
In May 2013, the media and Internet conglomerate chaired by Barry Diller -- IAC/Interactive Corp -- announced that was taking a substantial stake in the daily fantasy sports website, DraftStreet.  Just over one year later, it seems that...
Reuters  Jul 14  Comment 
U.S. cigarette maker Reynolds American Inc, in talks to buy rival Lorillard Inc, may have a hard time convincing regulators to approve the deal because of their big...




 
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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