USA Tipline

Punching up: The Tipline for 2 December 2022

GCR USA - 02 December 2022

Satire only works when it's directed at the powerful. Federal Trade Commission chair Lina Khan feels the same way about antitrust enforcement. Speaking before the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on Thursday, Khan said enforcers should use their prosecutorial discretion to pick cases that ensure they “punch up, don’t punch down”. Also in Tipline, the UK’s antitrust enforcer wants to stop one of its confidential decisions from being leaked as part of the Department of Justice's challenge to the Northeast Alliance.

Put me in coach: The Tipline for 1 December 2022

GCR USA - 01 December 2022

It’s three coaches and you’re out… of pay. A new lawsuit claims the National Collegiate Athletic Association illegally caps the number of assistant baseball coaches its members can pay at three – leaving the additional volunteer coach living off peanuts. Also in Tipline, US Sugar closes the deal that the Department of Justice is still attempting to block and Mark Zuckerberg stars in a progressive antitrust ad.

Sing When You're Winning: The Tipline for 30 November 2022

GCR USA - 30 November 2022

Plaintiffs’ work can be a tough grind, particularly if you are an economist seeking to upend the status quo. Hal Singer may not have succeeded in securing class status for McDonald’s and Jimmy John’s employees, but a California federal court has approved of the Econ One managing director’s contention that 21 million consumers may have been harmed by Google’s Play Store restrictions. Also in Tipline, Apple wins the right to seal confidential information ahead of the Federal Trade Commission’s trial against Meta/Within Unlimited.

You get what you pay for: The Tipline for 29 November 2022

GCR USA - 29 November 2022

After spending $44 billion to purchase Twitter, the World’s Richest Man has uncovered Apple’s “secret 30% tax on everything”. Over much of the past week, Elon Musk has taken to his social media platform to encourage the Department of Justice’s antitrust division to go after Apple and its supposedly monopolistic commission on his plans to charge $8 per month for a blue check mark. Things escalated on Monday when Musk posted a meme suggesting he was ready to “go to war” against the iPhone manufacturer. Welcome to Tipline, where the nuances of antitrust law are never limited to 280 characters.

French Press: The Tipline for 28 November 2022

GCR USA - 28 November 2022

As if trying to build a new antitrust order at home was not tiring enough. Federal Trade Commission chair Lina Khan is tasked with speaking before the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris this week at 3am eastern time. Meanwhile, antitrust-attuned lawmakers want you to know that they have not checked out for the year. The Senate antitrust subcommittee is holding a hearing on the Kroger/Albertsons merger this week. Last but certainly not least, the head of the FTC’s healthcare division headlines GCR Live: Antitrust in Pharmaceuticals on Thursday.

The Rent is Too Damn High: The Tipline for 25 November 2022

GCR USA - 25 November 2022

The Department of Justice is reportedly probing whether real estate technology company RealPage is coordinating a price-fixing conspiracy on behalf of apartment complexes. Gone are the days of scouring for minutes of meetings in smoke-filled rooms – Section 1 cases will henceforth be found by scouring through lines of code, as if antitrust cases weren’t already complicated enough. Also in Tipline, a Microsoft/Activision Blizzard challenge looks increasingly likely and US Sugar responds to the Antitrust Division’s appeal.

Yes harm, yes fowl: The Tipline for 23 November 2022

GCR USA - 23 November 2022

Turkey purchasers suing Butterball, Cargill and other poultry giants have plenty of reasons to be thankful this year. A federal Illinois court allowed their price-fixing claims to continue past the motion to dismiss stage, holding that ‘sharing is caring’ does not apply to competitive information. Speaking of fowl, enjoy Turkey Day. GCR USA will be back in your inboxes on Friday.

Castles in the sky: The Tipline for 22 November 2022

GCR USA - 22 November 2022

Disney is perhaps not “Where Dreams Come True” if you are wishing for lower streaming prices. A proposed class action has accused Mickey Mouse and friends of setting a price floor on live streaming by requiring its rivals to offer ESPN on their cheapest subscription plans. Also in Tipline, the latest reshuffling at the US antitrust enforcers and a glimpse at the impressive line-up of corporate witnesses proposed by the Federal Trade Commission and Meta/Within.

Just married: The Tipline for 21 November 2022

GCR USA - 21 November 2022

UnitedHealth and Change Healthcare tied the knot on 3 October, but the Department of Justice wants to rush them back to the altar. The Antitrust Division waited until almost the last possible moment to notify the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that it plans to ask for a divorce, giving the appellate court another chance to review a vertical marriage after the short-lived union of AT&T/Time Warner. Also in Tipline, the Antitrust Division probes Live Nation while Epic Games unveils some new claims against Google.

That sinking feeling: The Tipline for 18 November 2022

GCR USA - 18 November 2022

It’s possible that Elon Musk will achieve in a few weeks what competition enforcers have spent several years trying to do: fundamentally alter the business practices and/or structure of a major online platform. On the same day that Musk’s loyalty oath sparked a wave of resignations among his employees, the Senate’s top Republican antitrust lawyer was telling the ABA’s Fall Forum how difficult it is to get bills through Congress that would curb the power of Big Tech.

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