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…

In a recent letter to the House Transportation and Infrastructure leadership, all four sitting Federal Trade Commissioners joined in “grave concern” over that Committee’s plan to kick the agency out of the iconic, art deco building that FDR built for it nearly 75 years ago.  The House Committee and its chairman intend to turn the…

On February 3, the White House announced President Barack Obama’s intention to nominate Bill Baer to serve as Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department of Justice Antitrust Division. There was much speculation that Baer would be named to head the Antitrust Division after Sharis A. Pozen, the current acting assistant attorney general for antitrust,…

Having filed over 100 cases in the last 12 months, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division was especially active in 2011. The vast majority of those cases were criminal matters; however, 2011 will most likely be remembered for the Antitrust Division’s merger enforcement efforts. The Antitrust Division reviewed a number of mega-mergers in 2011. While…

Antitrust enforcement has certainly been revived at the Obama Justice Department. With recent cases against Comcast/NBC, health insurers and telecom firms, the DOJ has begun to demonstrate why antitrust enforcement is a critical bulwark for competitive markets. No area is in greater need of an infusion of sound enforcement than healthcare. The healthcare debate demonstrated…

Today, several federal agencies, including the federal antitrust agencies, issued rules and guidance for assisting health care providers in the formation of new accountable care organizations (ACOs). An ACO is a group of health care providers or suppliers or a network of groups—often affiliated with a hospital—collaboratively manage and coordinate care for Medicare beneficiaries. Under…

It is beginning to look like the U.S. Supreme Court will not be taking up any antitrust cases in the current term. Last week, the Court denied six petitions for review in antitrust-related matters. Just yesterday, the Court denied a petition for review in a Federal Trade Commission antitrust enforcement action. There have been far…

The Senate Appropriations Committee has approved legislation that, in addition to funding the Federal Trade Commission next year, would increase the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Act premerger filing fees that help fund the agency. The legislation (S. 1573) also would block efforts to relocate the headquarters of the FTC from its current location at 600 Pennsylvania Avenue,…