The Attorneys General of California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington have signed on to the U.S. Justice Department’s complaint challenging AT&T, Inc.’s proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA. An amended complaint, adding the seven states, was filed on September 16. On the same day, a proposed scheduling order was also filed in…

The U.S. Department of Justice today moved to block AT&T Corporation’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA Inc.  According to the Justice Department, the proposed acquisition would combine two of the four largest providers of mobile wireless telecommunications services. These four national carriers—AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile—control over 90 percent of the national cell phone market….

Last week, the federal district court in Detroit denied Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s motion to dismiss a federal/state antitrust action challenging the health insurer’s use of most favored nation (MFN) clauses in its provider agreements with various hospitals. The suit, filed in October 2010, alleges that the MFN clauses unreasonably restrained trade in…

Automated teller machine maker Nautilus Hyosung Holdings Inc. has been charged with obstruction of justice for submitting false documents to the government in its attempt to obtain U.S.antitrust approval of its proposed acquisition of a competing manufacturer of ATM systems in 2008. The altered documents allegedly misrepresented and minimized the competitive impact of Nautilus Hyosung…

As Assistant Attorney General Christine Varney is about to step down as head of the Department of Justice Antitrust Division, her successor has been named. Deputy Assistant Attorney General Sharis Arnold Pozen will become Acting Assistant Attorney General upon Varney’s departure, according to an August 4 Department of Justice announcement. “Sharis is a highly experienced…

Maureen K. Ohlhausen, a Washington, D.C. attorney and former Federal Trade Commission staffer, will likely be returning to the agency as a Commissioner. Yesterday evening, the White House announced President Barack Obama’s intention to nominate Ohlhausen to fill the position currently held by Commissioner William E. Kovacic. Kovacic’s term on the five-member Commission expires in…

Earlier today, the U.S. Court of Appeals in St. Louis vacated an injunction lifting the National Football League’s “lockout” of its players. The divided appellate court, just five days after hearing oral argument on the matter, concluded that, because the parties were involved in a labor dispute, the Norris-LaGuardia Act prohibited the federal district court…

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia earlier this week reaffirmed the “bright-line” rule limiting federal antitrust standing to direct purchasers. The court upheld dismissal (CCH 2010-1 Trade Cases ¶77,043) of an antitrust action brought by a small Pennsylvania hospital, which sought to represent members of a proposed class, composed of other hospitals, clinics, and…

How far can a competitor go in an effort to convince a local government to block a potential rival from setting up shop in its area without running afoul of the antitrust laws? Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago ruled that a hospital was shielded from antitrust liability for allegedly making misrepresentations…

Nasdaq OMX Group, Inc. and IntercontinentalExchange (ICE) have withdrawn their proposal to acquire NYSE Euronext in the face of antitrust objections from the U.S. Department of Justice. The Justice Department issued a statement on May 16, saying that it had informed the companies that it would file an antitrust lawsuit to block the deal. Under…