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Antitrust Law and Competitor Relationships

Antitrust Law and Competitor Relationships

This course outlines federal antitrust legislation and explains how antitrust laws regulate competitor relationships. It is designed for employees who come into contact with competitors in the routine course of their business. The course is not meant to replace the detailed advice that antitrust counsel can provide in any particular instance, but rather to highlight some of the more common situations in which extra care is required. In a free market economy, consumers benefit from being able to purchase the products and services that best meet their needs at competitive prices. These benefits are driven by competition, which provides a natural incentive for businesses to develop superior, low-cost alternatives to their competitors’ products and services in order to gain sales and profit. Competitive markets reward innovation and efficiency while penalizing inefficiency and poor quality. Federal antitrust laws formally protect and promote these ideals as a means of ensuring consumer welfare. While high-profile antitrust cases over the years have often involved government action against large corporations, such as AT&T and Microsoft, antitrust laws are not aimed solely at monopolies. They are, in fact, more widely applicable to agreements between competitors.

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Course Outline

  • 1. Overview    

  • 2. Legislation    

  • 3. Sherman Act    

  • 4. Clayton Act    

  • 5. Federal Trade Commission (FTC)    

  • 6. Illegal Agreements    

  • 7. Competitor Interactions    

  • 8. Helpful Strategies    

  • 9. Conclusion    

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the antitrust laws that govern competitor interactions as well as their application to everyday business situations.


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Antitrust Law and Competitor Relationships

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