Friday, January 17, 2014

Brunswick Corp. v. Pueblo Bowl-O-Mat, Inc. case brief

Brunswick Corp. v. Pueblo Bowl-O-Mat, Inc. case brief summary

  • A bowling manufacturer bought up a series of bowling alleys that were about to go bankrupt and a competing bowling alley chain sued, alleging that acquired centers caused damage by keeping prices down. The court found that this actually increased competition, since the acquired centers would have dropped out of the market, removing a competitor and increasing the market power of Pueblo.

  • A suit brought under the antitrust statutes requires antitrust injury. The injury must result from the kind of actions that the statues contemplate, such as reducing competition. You cannot bring an antitrust suit to protect extra profits gained from market power.
  • Watershed case that requires a clear theory of anticompetitive harm.
    • Forces courts to think about antitrust through economics, not merely doctrinal pigeonholes
  • People with potential standing to sue included:

    • Enforcement agencies (FTC and DOJ)
    • State attorney generals
    • Consumers, i.e. bowlers, likely through a class action

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