Items tagged with Price Fixing

Surging NAND flash and DRAM memory chip pricing has prompted China's economic regulator to look into whether or not suppliers such as Samsung and others have engaged in price fixing shenanigans. The chips in question are found in a variety of electronics products, most notably mobile phones, which use both NAND flash and DRAM ICs for permanent and temporary storage duties. "We have noticed the price surge and will pay more attention to future problems that may be caused by 'price fixing' in the sector," said Xu Xinyu, an official with the Pricing Supervision Department of the National Development and Reform Commission. He did not elaborate on the matter. Wang Yanhui, secretary general of the... Read more...
Apple has begun issuing credits and checks for millions of e-book purchases as the result of an antitrust lawsuit filed against it and five of the nation's largest publishing companies three years ago for their roles in an alleged e-book price fixing scheme. Consumers affected by the settlement can expect to receive a $6.93 credit for every e-book that was a New York Times bestseller, and a $1.57 credit for all other e-books. U.S. District Judge Denise Cole found Apple guilty of conspiring to fix e-book pricing back in July 2013 following an investigation by the U.S. Justice Department. In 2014, Apple settled the suit with the Justice Department along with over 30 states that got involved with... Read more...
Apple may have to pay consumers up to $400 million as part of a settlement agreement it reached with New York Attorney Eric T. Schneiderman over the company's alleged involvement in a price fixing conspiracy. A federal court in New York found that the conspiracy led to artificially inflated prices for e-books sold to consumers in New York and throughout the country. "This settlement proves that even the biggest, most powerful companies in the world must play by the same rules as everyone else," said Attorney General Schneiderman. "In a major victory, our settlement has the potential to result in Apple paying hundreds of millions of dollars to consumers to compensate them for paying unlawfully... Read more...
Qualcomm may have some explaining to do. The cellphone chip maker said in November it had been under investigation by China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) for potential antitrust violations, though the company didn't go into any detail. Now it's being reported that Xu Kunlin, head of NDRC's anti-price fixing bureau, said the agency has "substantial evidence" of price fixing shenanigans on the part of Qualcomm. The claim was first reported in the official English-language China Daily and picked up Reuters. Unfortunately, no other details on the matter have been shared at this time, though we suspect it won't be long before more information is known. Qualcomm's research facility... Read more...
Panasonic and its subsidiary Sanyo (by way of a 50.2 percent stake in the company) both pleaded guilty in separate price fixing allegations involving automotive parts and battery cells, the United States Department of Justice announced this week. The two firms will pay a total of $56.5 million in criminal fines, while LG Chem Ltd., a leading manufacturer of secondary batteries, also admitted guilt and will pay a fine of $1.056 million. The DoJ accused Panasonic of conspiring to fix prices of switches, steering angle sensors, and automotive high intensity discharge (HID) ballasts installed in cars sold in the U.S. and elsewhere. Panasonic carried out its scheme from at least as early as September... Read more...
The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking a $1 billion criminal fine against AU Optronics for its alleged involvement in a liquid crystal display (LCD) price fixing scheme that took place from 2001 to 2006. In addition to the hefty company fine, the DoJ also wants two convicted company executives to each serve 10 years in prison and pay $1 million in fines. "These defendants and AUO’s subsidiary, AU Optronics Corporation America, were central figures in the most serious price-fixing cartel ever prosecuted by the United States. Only these sentences could possibly reflect the seriousness of this offense or provide adequate deterrence," the DoJ said in a court document. AU Optronics was allegedly... Read more...
Dell and two other companies are going to receive a combined $198.5 million payment from Sharp to settle a civil lawsuit brought forth against a group of companies for setting artificially high prices for liquid crystal display (LCD) panels. Sharp, along with several other companies, was found guilty of price fixing following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and was already dinged for $120 million in fines. This $198.5 million payment is in addition to money already paid. "After broadly considering factors such as the U.S. civil lawsuit system and the facts of this case, Sharp has determined that agreeing to a settlement is the best policy," Sharp said in a statement. As of... Read more...
LCD makers got caught with their hands in the cookie jar, so to speak, and now it's time to pay up. The State of California Department of Justice announced a $538 million settlement resulting from a lawsuit filed in October 2010 against 10 companies who allegedly "conspired to fix, raise, maintain, or stabilize prices of TFT-LCD flat panels resulting in overcharges to consumers." The settlement applies to products with LCD panels (computer monitors, laptops, and PCs) purchased between 1999 and 2006, though only if you live in the District of Columbia or one of 24 states named in the settlement, including Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan,... Read more...
Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha you gonna do? Whatcha gonna do when the U.S. Department of Justice slaps you silly for conspiring to fix prices of LCD panels on a global scale? So maybe the actual theme song goes a little differently than that, but we have an answer to the question nonetheless. When the DoJ lobs a legal backhand your way for bending the public over and kicking them in the wallet, you're going to serve time in jail. That's the self-imposed plight Wen-Hung "Amigo" Huang, a former executive from Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corporation, finds himself in after pleading guilty to conspiracy to fix LCD prices. "Under his plea agreement which is subject to court approval, Huang, who was charged... Read more...
It's not like Hitachi Displays really needs any bad news considering just how poorly LCD sales are going right now, but regardless of that, it's still facing a fine that none of us would be fond of facing. The Japanese electronics manufacturer has just agreed (begrudgingly we're sure) to pay a staggering $31 million fine for its role in a conspiracy to fix prices in the sale of TFT-LCD panels sold to Dell, Inc. The United States Department of Justice made the proclamation, and details show that Hitachi has plead guilty to a one-count felony. The charge, which was filed in the U.S. District Court in San Francisco, blames Hitachi Displays Ltd., a subsidiary of Hitachi Ltd., with "participating... Read more...