Competition

  • May 24, 2016

    Brazil Probes Protectionist ‘Sham Litigation’ By Steel Cos.

    Competition authorities in Brazil said Monday that a trade association representing steelmakers including ArcelorMittal, ThyssenKrupp and Sinobras would have to answer claims by rebar importers that it has filed a wave of "sham litigation" as part of a sustained effort to delay imports and suppress competition.

  • May 24, 2016

    Swisscom Hit With $72.3M Sports Broadcast Antitrust Fine

    The Swiss Competition Commission said Tuesday it has hit Swisscom AG with a fine of CHF 71,818,517 ($72.3 million) for dominating the market for live broadcasting of Swiss soccer and ice hockey championship games on pay TV.

  • May 24, 2016

    Burden Too High In $6M Fight, Cox Customers Tell 10th Circ.

    Cox Communications Inc.'s Oklahoma City cable customers asked the Tenth Circuit on Monday to give them back the $6.3 million awarded by a jury that found the company anti-competitively tied rental fees for set-top boxes to its premium services, saying Cox is trying to wedge a higher burden of proof into the suit.

  • May 24, 2016

    German Antitrust Probe Prompts Concessions From Rail Giant

    German railway company Deutsche Bahn AG has agreed to change several ticket distribution practices in an agreement with Germany’s competition authority that will end an antitrust investigation related to the competition in the passenger rail ticket market, officials said Tuesday.

  • May 24, 2016

    Medtronic Can't Shake FCA Kickback Claims

    A Massachusetts federal judge said Monday he would let most of a False Claims Act suit against Medtronic Inc. go through, including allegations of kickbacks and whistleblower retaliation, but dismissed claims regarding improper off-label promotion.

  • May 24, 2016

    BREAKING: EU Clears AB InBev's $100B SABMiller Buy

    Anheuser-Busch InBev can go ahead with its planned $100 billion merger with SABMiller, provided that the brewing giants follow through on promises to sell virtually all of SABMiller's European beer business, the European Union’s competition regulator said Tuesday.

  • May 23, 2016

    Comcast Faces Antitrust Suit In 'Spot' Cable Ad Sales Row

    Comcast Corp. was hit with an antitrust suit in Illinois federal court Monday accusing it of violating federal antitrust laws by blocking competition in the $5.4 billion “spot” cable ad market, amid a U.S. Department of Justice investigation.

  • May 23, 2016

    Fla. City Brings Water Chemical Price-Fixing Class Action

    The city of Homestead, Florida, has been added to a growing list of purchasers bringing suit against several companies over an alleged price-fixing and bid-rigging conspiracy for liquid aluminum sulfate, a water-treatment chemical, filing a proposed class action Friday on behalf of indirect purchasers in 31 states and Washington, D.C.

  • May 23, 2016

    Chrysler Wins Spoliation Sanctions Against Dealership

    A California federal judge ruled Monday that a Chrysler dealership did not do enough to preserve emails while preparing for its lawsuit alleging the automaker supplied an inadequate number of vehicles, granting Chrysler’s motion for spoliation sanctions.

  • May 23, 2016

    Philly Hits Big Banks With Rate-Swap Antitrust Suit

    The city of Philadelphia filed a proposed class action in Illinois federal court Monday that accuses 14 major world financial institutions of colluding to prevent interest rate swaps from being bought and sold on an exchange, the latest in a series of suits over the same allegation.

  • May 23, 2016

    Banks Face More Big-Dollar Libor Deals After 2nd Circ. Loss

    Some of the world's biggest banks were dealt a major blow when the Second Circuit on Monday revived litigation alleging they rigged the London Interbank Offered Rate, and experts say that settlements could be in the offing in the decision's wake.

  • May 23, 2016

    Reed Smith In Houston Snags Antitrust Pro From K&L Gates

    Reed Smith LLP has hired away experienced antitrust attorney Bruce Blefeld, whose practice has spanned industries from energy to pharmaceuticals, from K&L Gates and announced Monday he has joined the firm's Houston office as a partner.

  • May 23, 2016

    French Ad Probe Puts Google, Facebook Under Microscope

    France’s antitrust agency on Monday said that it will examine the state of competition in online advertising, looking at factors including the role of big data and the market power that major players such as Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. might hold.

  • May 23, 2016

    FERC Playing Games In Manipulation Court Fight, Total Says

    A Total SA unit fighting market manipulation allegations in Texas federal court on Monday blasted the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's request to put off the company's summary judgment bid while the court decides whether it has jurisdiction, and urged the court to hold a hearing on the issue in June.

  • May 23, 2016

    Four Firms Named As Co-Lead Counsel In DirecTV NFL MDL

    Attorneys with four firms were appointed as co-lead counsel to the subscribers in a California multidistrict litigation alleging DirecTV’s exclusive NFL Sunday Ticket package violates federal antitrust laws after a judge said Monday Girard Gibbs LLP’s attorney lacks the experience for the role.

  • May 23, 2016

    7th Circ. Urged To Rethink FERC Project-Rights Ruling

    A transmission developer urged the Seventh Circuit Friday to reconsider its backing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's decision allowing a regional grid operator to honor non-federal rights of first refusal for regional electricity projects, claiming the erroneous ruling will stifle competition for new transmission projects.

  • May 23, 2016

    Railroads' Class Cert. Expert Can Testify In Price-Fixing Row

    Rail shippers failed to block a Harvard economist from testifying at a class certification hearing in a fuel surcharge-fixing suit against rail carriers, when a D.C. federal judge ruled Friday that the shippers opposed his testimony because of his opinions, not his methods.

  • May 23, 2016

    Hospitals Call FTC's Dire Merger Forecast 'A Work Of Fiction'

    Two Chicago-area hospitals seeking a merger told an Illinois federal court Wednesday that the Federal Trade Commission has not shown that the proposed union will hurt competition, calling the government’s predictions of harm unrealistic and its analysis “a work of fiction.”

  • May 23, 2016

    High Court Won't Hear Supermarket Antitrust Appeal

    The Supreme Court on Monday said it would not review a Third Circuit decision reviving a real estate developer’s claim that a New Jersey ShopRite chain's operator used anti-competitive tactics to block another supermarket from opening, according to an order list issued by the high court. 

  • May 23, 2016

    Sen. Asks Charter To Commit To Smooth Merger Transition

    The top Democrat on the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on Friday pushed the chiefs of Charter Communications Inc. and Bright House Networks LLC to personally commit to ensuring that the transition after their companies' merger is smooth, saying that customers’ services should not be disrupted.

Expert Analysis

  • Megamergers Under The Microscope

    Randy Gordon

    If the failed Halliburton-Baker Hughes and Staples-Office Depot mergers collectively constitute a bellwether, we can expect to see fewer horizontal competitors propose mergers in markets that are already concentrated, says Randy Gordon of Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP.

  • Not So Fast, Ohio: FERC Weighs In On Wholesale Energy

    Joseph H. Fagan

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently affirmed its role in ensuring reasonable rates for wholesale sales of electric energy in Ohio. But state utilities seek to further their objectives without invoking FERC jurisdictional issues, and if other states aim to advance their public policy initiatives using similar methods, it could impose higher costs on captive retail customers, say Joseph Fagan and David Doot at Day Pitney LLP.

  • Panama Papers: Reminders About Law Firm Cybersecurity

    Sean Doherty

    Nowhere is the attractiveness of law firms as cybercrime targets more evident than the recent Mossack Fonseca hack, believed to be the most significant data theft event in history. Firms represent a treasure trove of information and historically have had dreadful cybersecurity practices. There has been some progress, but firms can also commit to better defending their information by taking a simple, three-step approach, says Sean D... (continued)

  • New Corporate Offenses In UK: What US Cos. Should Know

    Susannah Cogman

    The U.K. government's intention to create new corporate offenses as part of the fight against corruption would be a very significant initiative, both from the perspective of the criminal exposure of corporate entities and from the perspective of the scale of the compliance programs that they must implement. U.S. practitioners will need to be aware of the likely extraterritorial scope of these offenses, say Susannah Cogman and James... (continued)

  • OPINION: Sotomayor's Solution To Pro Bono Is Incomplete

    David A. Lash

    In calling for mandatory pro bono service, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor is effectively using her bully pulpit to advance the cause of access to justice for the poor. Her courageous leadership is a clarion call to action that must be heeded. But bold as it may be, the pronouncement is incomplete, says David Lash, managing counsel for pro bono at O’Melveny & Myers LLP and a member of the Association of Pro Bono Counsel.

  • Creating Barclay Damon: Lessons From A Law Firm Merger

    John P. Langan

    Joining two firms with long histories meant not only combining cultures, philosophies and deeply rooted ways of doing business, but also combining two IT systems, two accounting systems, and two ways of handling many other administrative functions. It didn't help that the firms had different fiscal year ends, says John Langan, managing partner of Barclay Damon LLP.

  • Breaking The Health Company Compliance Program Monopoly

    Michael Peregrine

    The new governmental focus on enforcing antitrust laws apart from the M&A area has specific implications to the health care industry. Many aspects of health company operations and strategy could potentially implicate civil and criminal antitrust laws addressing price-fixing, market allocation and similar illegal conduct, say partners with McDermott Will & Emery LLP.

  • Reflecting On The 20th Anniversary Of BMW V. Gore

    Andrew Frey

    On May 20, 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court held that a $2 million punitive damages award imposed for a tort that caused $4,000 in economic harm was unconstitutionally excessive. In the ensuing 20 years, BMW v. Gore has proved to be a foundational case in punitive damages jurisprudence. We were fortunate enough to have played a role in this historic decision, say Mayer Brown LLP partners Andrew Frey and Evan Tager and Maserati North Am... (continued)

  • Corporate Counsel: Consumer Becomes Provider (The Sequel)

    Mark A. Cohen

    Last week, we discussed why corporate legal departments are taking on so much more work themselves instead of outsourcing it to law firms. This is, of course, an ominous sign for law firms and the traditional partnership structure. So too is disaggregation and the emergence of legal service providers as well as others — notably the Big Four — poised to enter the gargantuan legal services market, says Mark A. Cohen of Legal Mosaic LLC.

  • Uptick In FCPA Enforcement Suggests 2015 Drop Was Outlier

    Marc Alain Bohn

    After a relative slowdown in 2015, the pace of enforcement activity under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act has increased sharply in 2016, resulting in a record 15 first-quarter enforcement actions and 17 year to date, say Marc Alain Bohn and Michael Skopets of Miller & Chevalier Chtd.