Region: United States of America

What’s in a name: The Tipline for 23 September 2020

Antitrust officials from the US and EU yesterday praised the catchiness of the term “killer acquisition”. “I think it is a great phrase that obviously has captured a certain zeitgeist within the antitrust community,” said Ian Conner, director of the Federal Trade Commission’s competition bureau, before expressing concern over the broad application of the expression. But Conner also added that the most important contribution the phrase may have had over the past year is raising the profile of acquisitions of nascent competitors, flagging “the difficulties in challenging those transactions under the potential competition doctrine.”

23 September 2020

Conner: Section 2 gives FTC better chance to block anticompetitive mergers

Relying on the Sherman Act’s anti-monopolisation rules as well as the traditional merger control laws can give the Federal Trade Commission a better chance to stop potentially anticompetitive deals, the director of the agency’s competition bureau has said.

23 September 2020

Changing of the seasons: The Tipline for 22 September 2020

Today is the autumn equinox, an ideal time to swap out your telework t-shirts for your commute-free cardigans. The leaves are beginning to change and the requirements for Hart-Scott-Rodino merger filings may be too. The US antitrust agencies are taking notice of potential anticompetitive harm from common ownership and looking to make it more challenging for merging companies to hide the identity of their stakeholders.

22 September 2020

RBG: The Tipline for 21 September 2020

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on Friday at the age of 87. While not particularly vocal on antitrust, Ginsburg will be remembered for advancing gender equality under the law and also blazing a path for a future generation of lawyers. “I'm sometimes asked, 'When will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court]?' and I say 'When there are nine,’” she once said.

21 September 2020

John Pierpont Morgan: The Tipline for 18 September 2020

Is “there’s no such thing as bad publicity” a phrase people use earnestly or just something a PR representative tells a client when things go haywire? JPMorgan Chase sent some traders home this week after a positive covid-19 test, just days after the bank announced it would be requiring other traders to return to the office on Monday. Collaboration isn’t always such a great thing anyway. Just ask the ex-JPMorgan trader who received an eight-month prison sentence on Thursday for working a little too closely with the competition.

18 September 2020

Rest and relaxation: The Tipline for 17 September 2020

Today is the final day of the International Competition Network’s annual conference, co-hosted this year by the US antitrust agencies. Normally attendees would be expected to rush to airports as soon as the event was over to catch their flights home. But this year all anyone really needs to do is shut down their computers for some well-deserved rest and relaxation. It’s much easier to relax when you’re not stuck in a middle seat on an aeroplane.

17 September 2020

Einstein “trending toward insolvency”, chief executive says

The chief executive of Albert Einstein Healthcare Network on Wednesday testified that the company is in a “precarious” financial position and is “clearly trending toward insolvency”.

17 September 2020

Mundt: fines against large digital companies are ineffective

Fines do not work as an effective remedy to unilateral conduct in the digital economy, the president of Germany’s Federal Cartel Office has said.

16 September 2020

Happy munching: The Tipline for 16 September 2020

Today is both Mexican Independence Day and National Guacamole Day, which we’re guessing is no coincidence. Mexico is the world’s leading avocado producer and exporter, harvesting some 2.2 million tonnes of the fruit in 2018. Given the current pandemic predicament, we can’t be in Philadelphia to cover the Federal Trade Commission’s challenge to Jefferson Health’s acquisition of Albert Einstein Healthcare Network. But at least we can enjoy some chips and guac as we listen to the hearing. We promise to place our phones on mute so you are unable to hear the crunching.

16 September 2020

FTC witnesses defend product market in healthcare merger challenge

Witnesses called by the Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday substantiated the agency’s market definition in its challenge to Jefferson Health’s acquisition of Albert Einstein Healthcare Network.

16 September 2020

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