Antitrust and Competition Report

Analysis & insights from Reed Smith's Global Antitrust and Competition Team on the latest antitrust developments across the world

Latest from Antitrust and Competition Report

On 20 July 2021, the UK government announced a consultation, titled “A new pro-competition regime for digital markets” (the Consultation), which proposes a number of radical changes that would introduce a new regulatory regime applying to the largest digital platforms operating in the UK. The proposals include formally establishing a Digital Markets Unit (DMU) within the Competition and Markets Authority, and the introduction of a new regime by which the DMU would designate…
On 20 July 2021 the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published a consultation, which proposes a number of potentially far-reaching changes to competition and consumer law and policy. The proposed reforms set out in the consultation, Reforming Competition and Consumer Policy: Driving growth and delivering competitive markets that work for consumers (the Consultation), would change UK competition laws and introduce new consumer protection laws. The Government is also consulting on giving…
The Biden administration’s extensive Executive Order (EO) Promoting Competition in the American Economy encourages federal agencies to restrict the “unfair use” of non-compete clauses (and similar restrictive agreements) that “may unfairly limit worker mobility.” While the EO doesn’t signal any immediate changes to current non-compete agreement or U.S. antitrust laws, we could expect added scrutiny and enforcement from antitrust agencies ahead. Our antitrust and labor & employment teams discuss this issue in their recent Employment
As consumers demand more eco-friendly products and services, many companies are scrambling to prove their green credentials. Transportation and logistics companies are no different, seeking to provide more environmental-friendly means of transportation for goods and trying to source green suppliers. However it is vital that companies tread carefully and do not embellish the truth when it comes to communicating their commitment to green initiatives and their successes in this space. The practice of making misleading…
The new Subsidy Control Bill (the Bill) recently had its first reading in the House of Commons. Once passed into law, this Bill will introduce a new UK regime regulating the distribution of subsidies from government bodies to businesses in the UK. The Bill is significant and is expected by many to be the biggest change to the UK’s legislative landscape since Brexit. Undoubtedly, the Bill will bring about a dramatic shift from the previous…
The practice of making misleading environmental claims (so-called “greenwashing”) carries increasing risk in Europe. The European Commission and national consumer protection and/or competition authorities are more committed than ever to fight it, and a new EU initiative will require companies to substantiate claims they make about the environmental footprint of their products or services. In our latest client alert, we explain exactly what an ‘environmental claim’ is, and offer practical compliance tips that companies…
Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court weighed in on the fierce debate over student-athlete compensation, with the justices unanimously affirming an injunction that struck down National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) restrictions on education-related compensation and benefits for student athletes in NCAA v. Alston, et al., No. 20-512 (June 21, 2021). The Court found the NCAA was not exempt from antitrust law and that the lower courts had applied the correct standard of scrutiny. Notwithstanding…
Following a period of relative leniency for pharmaceutical companies, a Multilateral Pharmaceutical Merger Task Force formed by key antitrust enforcement agencies has been established to review and update merger analysis. The task force includes representatives from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Canadian Competition Bureau, the European Commission Directorate General for Competition, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, and the offices of state attorneys general. Read our full
The European Commission (EC) recently revealed a major change in merger policy affecting cross-border M&A deals in Europe. The new referral practice creates significant uncertainty for deals that would not have previously triggered scrutiny in the EU. In our latest client alert, we shed more light on the EC’s new referral policy and identify the practical key implications when planning cross-border M&A deals in Europe.…
On April 22, 2021, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that § 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act does not permit the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to seek, or a court to award, equitable monetary relief (e.g., restitution or disgorgement). This decision denies the FTC one of its most important enforcement tools, one that had frequently been used in both consumer protection and antitrust litigations. Our team of antitrust, regulatory, and consumer protection…