Civil Antitrust Litigation Continues to Decline
(20 Jun 2019) The latest available data from the federal courts show that during May 2019 the government reported only 47 new antitrust civil cases filed in the federal courts. According to the case-by-case court records analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University, there were just 357 antitrust suits for the first eight months of FY 2019. This is the third year such suits have declined under the Trump administration, down by about a third (32.4%) since FY 2016.

During May, only two antitrust suits were brought by the federal government. The first suit was brought in the District of Columbia against Amcor Ltd. seeking divestiture of three manufacturing medical packaging product facilities in order to proceed with the proposed acquisition of Bennis Company, Inc. The second suit was filed in Nevada against the Las Vegas Merchant Plumbers Association and others.

Most antitrust suits, however, are brought by private parties and are filed in the federal courts because of federal questions they raise. Only 20 out of the 357 suits brought thus far in FY 2019 were brought by the federal government. If the current pace of filings continues during the remaining months of FY 2019, antitrust filings are projected to only reach 536 this year. Last year there were 567 suits.

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