What Type Of Agreements Between Competitors Can Be Evidence Of An Anti-Competitive Agreement

In continental Europe, the principles of competition law have developed in the lex mercatoria. Examples of legislation that enshrine the principles of competition are the constitutiones juris metallici of Wenceslas II of Bohemia between 1283 and 1305, which condemned the combination of ore traders who increased prices; the statutes of the city of Florence in 1322 and 1325 followed Zeno`s legislation against state monopolies; and under Emperor Charles V, a law was passed in the Holy Roman Empire “to avoid losses due to monopolies and inadmissible treaties concluded by many merchants and craftsmen in the Netherlands.” In 1553, Henry VIII of England reinstated tariffs on food to stabilize prices in the face of fluctuations in supply from abroad. Thus, the law in this case was that the Sherman Act of 1890 was intended to prohibit the restriction of competition by large companies that cooperated with their competitors to determine production, prices and market shares, first through pools and then through trusts. Trusts first appeared in U.S. railroads, where the capital requirements of railroad construction excluded competitive services in sparsely populated areas at the time. This trust has enabled the railways to discriminate against the tariffs and services imposed on consumers and businesses and to destroy potential competitors. Different trusts could dominate in different industries. The Standard Oil Company Trust controlled several markets in the 1880s, including the heating oil, lead, and whiskey market. [31] Many citizens became sufficiently aware and publicly concerned about how trusts were negatively affecting them that the law became a priority for both major parties. A major concern of this law is that competitive markets themselves should provide the primary regulation of prices, products, interests and profits. Instead, the law prohibited anti-competitive practices and codified the common law doctrine of trade restriction.

[32] Professor Rudolph Peritz argued that competition law in the United States has evolved around two sometimes contradictory concepts of competition: first, that of individual liberty, free from state interference, and second, a fair competitive environment without excessive economic power […].


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