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Posts Tagged: "price fixing"

Bayh-Dole Under March-in Assault: Can It Hold Out?

The new year was hardly underway before Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) and 50 of his House colleagues sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell and NIH Director Francis Collins urging them to “march in” under the Bayh-Dole Act to control prices for drugs developed under the law. While the high cost of drugs is a legitimate concern, attempts to address the problem through technology transfer statutes would only guarantee that we will have fewer new drugs, not that they will be cheaper. The march-in provision is intended for instances when a licensee is not making good faith efforts to bring an invention to market or when national emergencies require that more product is needed than a licensee is capable of making, not to fix drug prices.

Bobbing for Antitrust Apples: E-book Price Fixing Challenge

So what did Apple and the other publishers do that put them on Uncle Sam’s Radar? Allegedly, they agreed among themselves to sell their e-books at the same price. This is also known as “Price Fixing” and it’s a big no-no. When companies who sell the same product agree among themselves to set the same price for that product, they could (not necessarily will) set that price as high as they wish, because there will be no place cheaper to get it. The type of price fixing alleged here – ‘horizontal’ price fixing – is considered violative of the Sherman Act regardless of the effect on the market. This means that even if the agreement didn’t actually harm the market whatsoever, it would still be considered anti-competitive.