Market 'Oversimplification' Doomed FTC Merger Challenge

Law360 (February 3, 2020, 9:33 PM EST) -- Federal Trade Commission staffers made it nearly impossible to win a freeze on Evonik's planned $625 million purchase of fellow hydrogen peroxide producer PeroxyChem, a D.C. federal judge said in a ruling unsealed Monday painting a picture of missteps in the first such FTC loss in over a decade.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly's ruling, first issued under seal late last month, laid the failure of agency staffers to win a preliminary injunction against the deal on "an important misstep" in their market definition: Instead of recognizing that hydrogen peroxide suppliers compete, accounting for varieties in different kinds of the chemical,...

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