Category Archives: Antitrust Counseling and Compliance

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Is There an HSR Sea Change on the Horizon? Advance Notice Seeks Information on Possible Amendments to Numerous Provisions of the HSR Rules

At the same time as it issued its notice of proposed rulemaking expanding the definition of “person,” the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (“ANPRM”) to request information related to seven topics “to help determine the path” for future amendments to the HSR Rules.  In explaining the reasons for the … Continue Reading

Tell Me More – Antitrust Agencies to Demand More Information from Investment Funds

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) recently issued a notice of proposed rulemaking to amend the premerger notification rules (the “Rules”) that implement the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (the “HSR Act”) to change the definition of “person” and create a new exemption.  The new definition of person is specifically designed to obtain more information … Continue Reading

SEC and DOJ Adopt Memorandum of Understanding to Formalize Interagency Cooperation in the Securities Industry

On June 22, 2020, Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim, head of the Antitrust Division at the Department of Justice, and Jay Clayton, Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) concerning “Cooperation with Respect to Promoting Competitive Conditions in the Securities Industry.”… Continue Reading

Higher Filing Thresholds for HSR Act Premerger Notifications and Interlocking Directorates Announced

Higher Thresholds For HSR Filings On January 28, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission announced revised, higher thresholds for premerger filings under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976. The filing thresholds are revised annually, based on the change in Gross National Product (GNP). The new thresholds will become effective on February 27, 2020. Acquisitions that … Continue Reading

Axon Sues FTC Over Use of Administrative Adjudication in Merger Investigations

On January 3, 2020, Axon Enterprises Inc. filed a complaint against the Federal Trade Commission in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona challenging the constitutionality of the FTC’s administrative process.  Axon’s complaint marks the latest salvo in a decades-long critique of the disparity between FTC and Department of Justice merger enforcement … Continue Reading

Why Aren’t There More California Below-Cost Pricing Cases? *

California’s below-cost pricing statute, the Unfair Practices Act (the “UPA”), is perhaps the broadest such statute in the nation, and far broader than comparable federal laws, which have been narrowed in recent decades almost to the vanishing point.  Indeed, the statute—which dates back to the Great Depression and the era of New Deal economics—could be … Continue Reading

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Vitamin C and the Future of U.S. Antitrust Enforcement Against Chinese Companies *

Over the last three decades, government antitrust enforcers and private plaintiffs in the United States have increasingly sought to apply U.S. antitrust laws to conduct by foreign businesses that is deemed to have effects on the U.S. economy. Many of these foreign businesses have been located in Asia:  since the 1990s there have been waves … Continue Reading

HSR and Antitrust Considerations for Private Equity Firms in M&A Transactions

An increasing number of M&A transactions each year involve private equity firms. Like any other transaction, the parties in private equity deals must be cognizant of the filing requirements under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 and the substantive requirements of the Clayton Act § 7, which prohibits transactions that may “substantially . . … Continue Reading

Higher Filing Thresholds for HSR Act Premerger Notifications and Interlocking Directorates Announced

Higher Thresholds For HSR Filings On January 26, 2018, the Federal Trade Commission announced revised, higher thresholds for premerger filings under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976. The filing thresholds are revised annually, based on the change in gross national product and will be effective thirty days after publication in the Federal Register. Publication … Continue Reading

Antitrust Not Always Available in Competitor Disputes in the Healthcare Sector

The antitrust injury and antitrust standing defenses/doctrines are alive and well in healthcare.  A recent case, SCPH Legacy Corp. et al. v. Palmetto Health et al., shows that a competitor is not always the most legally appropriate plaintiff to bring an antitrust case, especially when the competitor’s alleged harm stems from increased competition.  This article … Continue Reading

Higher Filing Thresholds for HSR Act Premerger Notifications and Interlocking Directorates Announced

1. Higher Thresholds For HSR Filings On January 19, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission announced revised, higher thresholds for premerger filings under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976. The filing thresholds are revised annually, based on the change in gross national product and will be effective thirty days after publication in the Federal Register. … Continue Reading

Antitrust Agencies Issue Guidance To HR Professionals Regarding Hiring and Compensation Decisions

The U.S. Antitrust Agencies (the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission) recently issued a document entitled “Antitrust Guidance For Human Resource Professionals” intended to alert HR professionals to potential antitrust violations involving hiring and compensation decisions. The Guidance states that firms that compete to hire or retain employees are … Continue Reading

Brexit News: UK Judges Throw a Block in the Road of Article 50

Invoking Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union requires participation of the UK Parliament say Lord Chief Justices Lord Sales and Lord Thomas of the Royal Courts of Justice in London who handed down their judgment today. This is a significant step, but only a step along the way. The final outcome remains … Continue Reading

Maximum Civil Penalties for HSR Violations to Increase to $40,000 per Day

For parties considering a merger or other transaction, the civil penalties for failing to comply with the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (“HSR Act”) are about to increase significantly. On June 29, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission announced that the maximum civil penalty for noncompliance with the premerger filing requirements of the HSR Act … Continue Reading
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