AntitrustKirby McInerney has decades of experience representing investors in litigation relating to market manipulation and price fixing for both indirect and direct purchasers, in cases brought under the Sherman Act and state law analogs. The firm’s experience spans the markets for gasoline, propane, cement, concrete, steel, potash, silver, and fixed income products.
KM attorneys have extensive experience prosecuting cases against corporations for violations of the full breadth of antitrust laws: illegal price fixing, unlawful monopolization, monopoly leveraging, illegal tying arrangements, illegal mergers or acquisitions, unfair competition, exclusive dealing, and refusals to deal. In recent years, KM has represented market makers and hedge funds in commodities manipulation cases involving silver, propane, and fixed income products.
Examples of KM’s experience in antitrust litigation include:
- In re LIBOR-Based Financial Instruments Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-md-02262 (S.D.N.Y.). KM filed the first LIBOR manipulation lawsuit on behalf of investors and currently serves as court-appointed co-lead counsel for the exchange-based class alleging the fixing of prices of a benchmark interest rate. The case has resulted in partial settlements of $187 million which combined represent the largest recovery in a “futures-only” commodities class action litigation.
- In re Credit Default Swaps Auctions Litigation, 21-cv-00606 (D.N.M.). Lead counsel on behalf of the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office and the New Mexico State Investment Council alleging that leading credit default swap (CDS) dealers took part in a more than decade-long, multibillion-dollar scheme to manipulate the benchmark prices used to value credit default swap contracts at settlement.
- Wacker v. JP Morgan Chase & Co., No. 15-cv-00994 (S.D.N.Y.). Representation of individual silver futures traders alleging manipulation of silver futures spreads. KM achieved a landmark appellate decision in this case establishing pleading standards for monopolization claims in futures markets. The case preceded a related Department of Justice criminal investigation into JPMorgan that resulted in an over-$920 million criminal penalty.
- In re Digital Advertising Antitrust Litigation, 20-cv-03556 (N.D.C.A.). Acting as a Court-appointed Executive committee member and class counsel representing publishers alleging that Google monopolized and suppressed competition in online display advertising.
- Dennis v. The Andersons, Inc. et al., No. 20-cv-04090 (N.D. of Ill.). Co-lead counsel of a putative class of exchange-based investors alleging monopolization and manipulation of Chicago Board of Trade soft red winter wheat futures contracts in violation of federal antitrust and commodity exchange laws.
- In re Foreign Exchange Benchmark Rates Antitrust Litigation, No. 13-cv-07789 (S.D.N.Y.). Special fiduciary representation for the exchange-based class for a putative class of participants who traded futures and options in the FX market. The case has already resulted in partial settlements of more than $2.3 billion.
- Sullivan v. Barclays PLC, No. 13-cv-02811 (S.D.N.Y.). Class counsel in the benchmark rate antitrust litigation on behalf of a putative class of investors who traded derivative products linked to Euribor, including futures and options contracts on the NYSE LIFFE exchange. The case has already resulted in partial settlements of more than $300 million.
- In re North Sea Brent Crude Oil Futures Litigation, No. 13-md-02475 (S.D.N.Y.). Sole lead counsel on behalf of a proposed class of Brent crude oil futures traders alleging benchmark manipulation.
- Microsoft antitrust cases. Co-lead counsel on behalf of classes of indirect purchasers in connection with antitrust proceedings against Microsoft. The litigations resulted in settlements totaling nearly a billion dollars for consumers in the states of New York, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Minnesota (where the litigation proceeded to trial). More recently, KM served as consulting and advisory counsel to Canadian lead counsel based on the firm’s Co-Lead roles in the U.S. Microsoft cases. The Canadian action resulted in a settlement of $395 million.
- In re Effexor XR Antitrust Litig., 11-cv-5479 (D.N.J.). Acting as lead counsel and head of the discovery committee to a putative class of direct purchasers of brand name and generic equivalents of extended-release venlafaxine hydrochloride capsules against drug manufacturers. Among the claims, defendants are alleged to have delayed market entry of generic versions and entered reverse payment settlements.
- In re Ductile Iron Pipe Fittings (“DIPF”) Indirect Purchaser Antitrust Litig., No. 12-cv-00169 (D.N.J.). Co-lead counsel in a case alleging the raising and fixing of prices in the market for ductile iron pipe fittings. The case resulted in a settlement of $4.1 million.
- In re Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) Antitrust Litigation, MDL No. 1917 (N.D. Cal.). KM is one of the core firms in an indirect purchaser antitrust litigation. The case resulted in settlements on behalf of end payers totaling $576.75 million. Specifically, the Special Master in the CRT litigation noted that, “Kirby played an integral role in this case and assumed significant risk . . . Kirby’s work was at a very high level [and] Kirby’s work greatly benefited the Class.”
- In re Broiler Chicken Antitrust Litigation, 16-cv-08637 (N.D.Ill.). Serving as counsel for a certified class of commercial and institutional businesses in a case alleging that numerous poultry producers, such as Tyson and Perdue Farms, conspired to limit production and increase the price of broiler chickens. These big-name poultry producers' conduct additionally led to a criminal investigation and numerous indictments.
- In re Packaged Seafood Products Antitrust Litigation, 15-md-02670 (C.D.C.A.). Representing class members in this case alleging that the defendants, StarKist, Bumble Bee, Chicken of the Sea, and their parent companies, conspired to fix the price of packaged tuna. This case impacts the everyday consumer due to the overwhelming control these three corporations have over the market for this food staple.
- In re Visa Check/MasterMoney Antitrust Litigation, No. 96-cv-05238 (S.D.N.Y.). Class counsel with second largest lodestar in a direct purchaser debit card fee case. The case resulted in a settlement of over $3 billion.
- In re Reformulated Gasoline (RFG) Antitrust and Patent Litigation and Related Actions, No. 05-cv-01671 (C.D. Cal). Co-lead counsel in an antitrust class action pertaining to Unocal’s alleged manipulation of the standard-setting process for low-emissions reformulated gasoline in California, which plaintiffs claim caused inflated retail prices. KM obtained a $48 million settlement for indirect purchasers.
- In re BP Propane Indirect Purchaser Antitrust Litigation, No. 06-cv-03541 (N.D. Ill.). Co-lead counsel for the propane purchaser class. KM secured a $15 million settlement.