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Terrell McSweeny Confirmed as Fifth FTC Commissioner

By on Apr 11, 2014
Posted In FTC Developments

10 months after President Obama nominated her, Terrell McSweeny has been confirmed as the fifth FTC commissioner.  The vote was 95-1 for McSweeny with David Vitter, a Republican from Louisiana, voting against her nomination. McSweeny’s confirmation marks the first time in history that four women have served as FTC commissioners at the same time.  It...

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FTC Commissioners Disagree on Section 5 Authority

By on Mar 6, 2014
Posted In FTC Developments

Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act confers broad enforcement powers on the Commission to prohibit “unfair methods of competition.”  In her February 13, 2014 keynote address to the Competition Law & Economics Symposium at George Mason law school, FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez argued that it would be a mistake for the Commission...

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Lawmakers Go Hunting for “Patent Trolls”

By on Mar 5, 2014
Posted In IP Antitrust

Oregon has now become the second state to take aim at non-practicing entities (NPEs), more colorfully called “patent trolls,” with laws addressing patent enforcement.  On February 25, 2014, the state attorney general announced that the legislature had passed a measure making it a violation of the Oregon Unlawful Trade Practices Act to send a demand...

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Judge Rules in Favor of DOJ Finding Bazaarvoice/PowerReviews Merger Anticompetitive

By on Jan 13, 2014
Posted In DOJ Developments, Mergers & Acquisitions

On January 8, 2014, Judge Orrick of the Northern District of California ruled that Bazaarvoice’s acquisition of competitor PowerReviews violated Section 7 of the Clayton Act.  The ruling was in favor of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).  The public version of the opinion was made available on January 10.  In its self-described “necessarily lengthy...

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$20 Million Settlement in In re: High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation, a Non-Poaching Agreement Case

By on Oct 1, 2013
Posted In Private Litigation

by Joseph F. Winterscheid and Nick Grimmer Three of the seven companies defending allegations that they violated U.S. antitrust law by agreeing not to recruit each other’s employees agreed to settle all claims against them in In re: High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation for a total of $20 million. This putative class action and substantial settlement...

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Fifth Circuit Reverses $25 Million Damages Award Against Pilgrim’s Pride

By on Sep 3, 2013
Posted In Agriculture

On August 27, 2013, the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit reversed a district court damages award of more than $25 million against Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation, a large producer of processed chicken.  A group of chicken growers with whom Pilgrim’s Pride contracted filed suit against the company alleging that the company violated the Packers...

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Resale Price Maintenance in China: Enforcement Authorities Imposing Large Fines for Anti-Monopoly Law Violations

By on Aug 9, 2013
Posted In Chinese Developments

by Henry L.T. Chen, Frank Schoneveld, Alex An and Jared Nelson Recently Shanghai High People’s Court reached a decision in the first lawsuit involving resale price maintenance (RPM) since China’s Anti-Monopoly Law (AML) came into effect five years ago.  Shortly thereafter, a key enforcement agency announced RPM-related fines against six milk powder companies, five of which...

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New Guidelines on Regional Aid for 2014-2020

By on Jun 27, 2013
Posted In EC Developments

by Martina Maier The European Commission adopted new Guidelines for regional aid for the period 2014–2020.  The new legal framework will have significant impact on the possibility of public support for investments of public and private undertakings in the European Union.  Major policy changes include the limitation of the possibility for large undertakings to benefit...

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Germany: New Fining Guidelines

By on Jun 25, 2013
Posted In German Developments

by Martina Maier and Philipp Werner The German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) has recently published new Guidelines for the Setting of Fines.  These guidelines implement the recent decision by the German Federal Supreme Court (BGH, judgment of 26.02.2013), according to which the 10 percent maximum fine does not constitute a cap but the upper limit of the...

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EU’s Top Court Rules That Blanket Ban on Access to Leniency Documents is not Permitted

By on Jun 12, 2013
Posted In Cartel Enforcement

by Philipp Werner and David Henry The European Union’s top court rules that a national law which requires the consent of all parties before access to the file is given to third-party antitrust damages claimants is incompatible with EU law; a national court must be able to decide on disclosure weighing up the interests in...

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