George Mason University (GMU) Law Professor Joshua D. Wright has been picked by the Obama Administration to replace Federal Trade Commission member J. Thomas Rosch—a fellow Republican—whose term expires later this month. The White House announced the intended nomination on September 10. In addition to serving as a professor at GMU School of Law and…

Reverse payments settlements between patent holders and would-be generic competitors in the pharmaceutical industry should be reviewed under a “quick look” rule of reason analysis based on the economic realities of the reverse payment settlement, the U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled today. The appellate court decided that wholesalers and retailers who purchased a…

More than four years after Polypore International Inc. acquired rival battery separator manufacturer Microporous Products L.P., the U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta has determined that the transaction was anticompetitive. The appellate court yesterday upheld a December 2010 opinion of the Federal Trade Commission, which held that the that the merger of the two producers…

Many opponents of Google’s business practices have trotted out the United States v. Microsoft decision and declared with beguiling simplicity that Google is the next Microsoft. They have suggested that the government’s case against Microsoft ten years ago provides a roadmap for a similar enforcement action against Google. To them, all you have to do…

This morning the Court granted certiorari in Federal Trade Commission v. Phoebe Putney Health, No. 11-1160, on appeal from an execrable pair of opinions in the Eleventh Circuit and the Middle District of Georgia. At issue is a local hospital merger that would give the acquiror 100% in its county and upwards of 90% in…

Some U.S. Supreme Court watchers may have been disappointed that the Court on the last day of the October 2011 term–according to the Court’s calendar–did not decide the fate of President Obama’s health care overhaul legislation. That decision is most likely to come within the next three days, before the Court wraps up for the…

Two recent antitrust matters serve as reminders that exchanging sensitive information with business competitors can pose significant antitrust risks – particularly when companies stray from the “safety zones” established by the federal antitrust enforcement authorities. From an antitrust perspective, agreements to exchange information present significant risks. An information exchange has the potential to facilitate unlawful…

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta today rejected the Federal Trade Commission’s challenge to a patent litigation settlement between brand name and generic drug companies as an unlawful agreement not to compete in violation of Section 5(a) of the FTC Act. The FTC brought the case in 2009 against Solvay Pharmaceuticals and generic manufacturers…

Ah, the Spring Meeting.  God I love it. Admittedly, the ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, perhaps the profession’s preeminent event, is in some respects getting to be just a bit of a circus.  What were once a handful of calm, early evening cocktail receptions in the bowels of the Marriott have grown into a deafening…

The next Term may see significant SCOTUS consideration of the state action immunity, the first such case since 1992. The decision below in the defendants’ favor was quite plainly wrong, and so it might also become only the second antitrust case in twenty years in which the Court has ruled for a plaintiff.  That would…