European Commission Fines Big Memory Producers €331M For Cartel Involvement

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News Posted: Fri, May 21 2010 8:42 AM
Micron, Samsung, Hynix, Infineon, NEC, Hitachi, Mitsubishi, Toshiba, Elpida and Nanya. Ten companies, some of which you have definitely heard of before, all of which are being hit with some very bad news this week from the European Union. The European Commission branch this week handed down their first settlement in an ongoing investigation into cartel-like activities between these parties, which purportedly helped to "fix prices" in order to keep DRAM prices artificially high.

This isn't completely unusual. We have also seen big-name companies in the LCD world hit with similar fines, and the EU never takes kindly to things of this matter. Micron, it should be noted, is being spared of a fine, simply because they "revealed the existence of the cartel to the Commission." Honesty, rewarded. All told, the other guys are splitting up a whopping €331 fine (around $415 million), and it comes after all of them confessed to being a part of the whole scheme.

The full details of the process and splits are linked below, but suffice it to say, we doubt these guys will be trying this little trick again anytime soon. Can we get a round of applause for the EU for keeping these giants in check? Now, off to find that ultra-cheap RAM for our gaming rig...

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Super Dave replied on Fri, May 21 2010 12:56 PM

Dirty rats.

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3vi1 replied on Fri, May 21 2010 3:15 PM

I think this article needs a small update: €331 is $451.60, not $415,000,000.

I read the headline and thought to myself: "Dammmm, they got off cheap!", until I realized you meant €331M.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?


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Dave_HH replied on Sat, May 22 2010 12:24 AM

Edited, 3vi1... good catch.

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realneil replied on Sat, May 22 2010 2:16 PM

So in Europe they can't keep doing what they've been doing,......but what's their practices like here? Are we being gouged? Maybe so,...........

Maybe this will see a drop in prices for memory related products across the board here in the States too.

I HOPE SO,,,,,,,,

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mhenriday replied on Sun, May 23 2010 12:00 PM

I applaud the EC's action and certainly hope that these fines will lead to lower prices for those of us who are in the habit of purchasing memory modules. But for some reason, I find myself skeptical - plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose....


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