Posts Tagged ‘antitrust’

August 31 roundup

  • “If you want lifetime employment, go into compliance.” [Daniel Yergin, WSJ via Arnold Kling]
  • A Supreme Court with new Clinton nominees likely to spell bad news for business in arbitration, class actions, employment/labor, environmental issues [Daniel Fisher]
  • Guilty plea for man who staged 50+ fake car accidents as part of eastern Connecticut fraud ring [U.S. Department of Justice, Norwich Bulletin, Insurance Journal]
  • An ambitious social welfare program in India failed in part because of its transparency and anti-corruption rules [Phys.org]
  • “The Supreme Court Should Reassert the Importance of Procedural Gatekeeper Rules to Deter Antitrust Litigation Excesses” [Alden Abbott]
  • A short guide to what lawyers mean by “equity,” for law students and others [Sam Bray]

Banking and finance roundup

  • To keep your sex business free from the coils of federal regulation, your best bet might in fact be Ted Cruz, implacable opponent of Operation Choke Point [Elizabeth Nolan Brown; more from Snopes on rather silly attacks on Cruz for doing job lawyers are expected to do for clients in Texas case]
  • Snoopy, you’re not systematically important: judge frees MetLife from SIFI designation under Dodd-Frank [Thaya Brook Knight/Cato, John Cochrane]
  • What with Sen. Elizabeth Warren trying to put a lid on some companies’ criticism of the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, hope it’s still OK for the rest of us to talk about it [Thaya Brook Knight, Cato]
  • Sen. Warren isn’t only one using letters to SEC to browbeat businesses: New York City elected Public Advocate Letitia (“Tish”) James tries to hassle gunmaker Sturm Ruger to comply with various demands of gun control advocates [Manikandan Raman, Benzinga/Yahoo; more on Ms. James and her blames]
  • Next term Supreme Court will consider case on scope of insider trading law, Salman v. U.S. [Ira Stoll, more] “Returning to Common-Law Principles of Insider Trading After United States v. Newman” [Richard Epstein, Yale Law Journal on Second Circuit’s decision via Stoll]
  • DoJ cracks down on big-investor activism — at least when of a sort antitrust enforcers don’t like [Matt Levine]

Economics, not competitor resentments, should guide FTC

George Mason lawprof and former Federal Trade Commission commissioner Joshua Wright, who specializes in antitrust, guestblogging at Daniel Fisher’s on FTC v. McWane:

Proving antitrust harm with rigorous economic evidence is hard. The FTC would prefer to avoid that route and instead favor an approach where lower courts would just defer to its “expert” judgment and conclude that whatever business practices the agency says are anticompetitive are in fact so. This outcome is unsurprising given that the FTC has ruled for itself in 100 percent of its cases over the past three decades – though it is reversed more often than the decisions of federal court judges. So much for unbiased rigor and expertise. But the Supreme Court has consistently rejected the view that the FTC or any antitrust plaintiff can make out a case with a stack of complaints from disgruntled rivals. Instead, the Supreme Court has made clear that the antitrust rules applied to the behavior of a single firm acting alone – that is, a firm alleged to have monopolized an industry on its own rather than joined a cartel with rivals – are to be governed by economic thinking and economic evidence instead of hand-waving and complaints from rivals alone.

L.A. eateries adopt surcharge for employee health, get charged with price fixing

Trying, they said, to be responsible employers, a group of Los Angeles restaurants banded together and adopted a 3 percent surcharge on bills to help secure healthcare coverage for their employees. Now San Francisco attorney Daniel Sterrett — who does not deny that the surcharge is going toward the announced purpose of employee healthcare — has filed an intended class-action lawsuit saying the owners have violated California law against price-fixing. [CBS Los Angeles, ABA Journal]

A mixed Ninth Circuit ruling on antitrust and the NCAA

“Colleges can’t be required to let star athletes cash in on their celebrity status, a Ninth Circuit panel ruled Wednesday, reversing part of a landmark antitrust decision that had called into question the NCAA’s entire business model.” [Marisa Kendall, The Recorder; W$J] From August: “How Sports Got Blitzed By the Plaintiff’s Bar” [Ross Todd, The Recorder]

September 16 roundup

  • Study hyped as showing vaping serves as gateway to smoking doesn’t actually show that [Jacob Sullum]
  • Your guano ticket to land-based wealth: 1856 law on bird droppings can help you claim an island [Mark Mancini, Mental Floss]
  • Dignity of the bench: “Judge lied about claimed toilet-lid attack outside courthouse, jury finds” [ABA Journal; Waterloo, N.Y.]
  • Someone’s using someone: “Providence using plaintiffs bar to become player in antitrust cases” [Jessica Karmasek, Legal Newsline, related]
  • Competitive Enterprise Institute picks what it considers the nation’s six worst state AGs, most names are familiar to our readers [Hans Bader/CEI, more, full report in PDF, and thanks for link]
  • “Frivolous Serial Pro Se Litigant Upset Journalists Portrayed Him As A Frivolous Serial Litigant” [Tim Cushing, TechDirt]
  • Model of arbitration in Njal’s Saga: binding, provided it roughly tracks outcome of averted violence [Tyler Cowen]

May 27 roundup

  • All aboard! “Louisiana AG hires nine private law firms, 17 attorneys for federal antitrust pharmaceutical lawsuit” [Legal NewsLine]
  • National Association of Insurance Commissioners has, and exploits, legally privileged status as collector of insurance data. Time for open access [Ray Lehmann]
  • Europe’s antitrust charges against Google remind us of “the poverty of the standard antitrust doctrine” [Pierre Lemieux]
  • Court blasts Morrison Foerster for ‘nonsensical’ legal theories and ‘carnival fun house’ arguments [ABA Journal]
  • “Trolls aren’t the primary problem with the patent system. They’re just the problem Congress is willing to fix.” [Timothy Lee, Vox] What makes you think lawyers and rent-seekers aren’t going to turn “patent reform” to their own purposes? [Mark Mills]
  • “It only goes that one direction, too.” Rachel Maddow recognizes the fairness problem with one-way fee shifting, this one time [Huffington Post on pro-defendant Colorado firearms law]
  • CPSC still going after Zen Magnets, which isn’t backing down [Nancy Nord, earlier]

“Apple’s Antitrust Lord – The outside legal monitor who bills for reading our editorials.”

This Wall Street Journal editorial may be under a paywall or registration for some readers, but its highlight comes in its headline: settlement monitor Richard Bromwich, appointed by a federal judge in 2013 to oversee Apple, “bills for reading our editorials.” More on settlement monitors at our tag; more on Apple and antitrust.

Roger Parloff on Apple’s e-books defense

After charging hard into a market that had been almost entirely dominated by Amazon, Apple found itself facing antitrust charges filed by the U.S. Department of Justice and 33 state attorneys general, culminating in a bench-trial courtroom loss in 2013, now on appeal. I missed it at the time, but a couple of months back Roger Parloff had a write-up at Fortune on why the key Apple executive at the center of the case “says he’d ‘do it again’ – but ‘take better notes.'”