The worst antitrust offenses are cartel violations, price fixing, bid rigging & customer allocation. Price fixing is when 2 plus competing sellers agree on what prices to charge, ex: by agreeing that they will increase prices a certain amount or that they won't sell below a certain price. Bid rigging is when 2 plus firms agree to bid in such a way that a designated firm submits the winning bid, typ for local, state or fed gov contracts.

Customer-allocation agreements involve some arrangement between competitors to split up customers, such as by geographic area, to reduce or eliminate competition. Such price-fixing, bid-rigging & customer-allocation agreements, unlike joint research agreements for ex, provide no plausible offsetting benefits to consumers. These agreements are generally secret, & the participants mislead & defraud customers by continuing to hold themselves out as competitors despite their agreement not to compete.
Price fixing, bid rigging & customer allocation harm consumers & taxpayers by causing them to pay more for products & services & by depriving them of other byproducts of true competition. Nor is there usually any question in the minds of violators that their conduct is unlawful. Such practices raise the price of a product or service by more than 10 %, sometimes much more, & that Amer consumers & taxpayers pour billions of $ each yr into the pockets of cartel members. People who take consumer & taxpayer $ this way are thieves.
Minneapolis Packaged-Ice Company Executives Plead Guilty to Customer Allocation Conspiracy involving the allocating customers
by loverocn October 21, 2009

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