Clayton Anti-Trust Law

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Christina Herrera Professor Johns BLAW 3400 5 December 2012 Clayton Anti-trust Law In the late 1800’s there were some big names in the economy. Two of the biggest trusts out there where the Carnegie Steel and John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Company. These two companies and a few others dominated the economy and controlled not only the prices, but the market share for their products. In response, the Sherman Anti-trust Act was passed around 1890 to limit the control. The Sherman Act however, did not cover everything that businesses needed it to cover. In 1914, Woodrow Wilson instructed Congress to pass a new set of antitrust laws called the Clayton Act. (Swenson, 2) The Sherman Act was first passed to ensure that no company “shall…show more content…
“The most important provision of this act however is the prevention of anticompetitive mergers. This occurs when a company buys a competing firm. While most mergers allow the companies to create better quality goods at less expensive prices, some mergers limit competition and make price fixing easier. This part of the act was designed to prevent mergers from creating monopolies” (Ellsworth, 4). This section of the Clayton act wanted to promote free trade and keep smaller businesses from getting too greedy. Basically the act tried to keep out any anti-competitive behavior out. Also in section seven there were provisions for prohibiting certain types of holding companies. This is a company whose primary purpose is to hold stock of other companies, which the government saw as “an old fashioned trust” and wanted to make sure those did not arise again like in the late…show more content…
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) where the only two agencies that could enforce this act. The Federal Trade Commission said “unfair methods of competition in or affecting commerce, and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce are hereby declared illegal” (Abernathy, 10). Either the DOJ or the FTC can enforce the Clayton Act, but “violations of that statue are not crimes and can be pursued only through civil proceedings” (11). The two agencies monitor these laws and will enforce them when

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