Top tips for purchasing professionals on spotting possible vendor collusion

By Robert E Connolly and Mark A Kasten

This year promises to be another in which corporate purchasing departments work hard to keep costs down while vendors try to increase their margins. In this marketplace tug of war, vendors will occasionally engage in a little self-help by reaching out to their competitors and agreeing to end ‘ruinous competition’ and establish ‘fair prices’.

This is illegal.

The Sherman Antitrust Act, passed in 1890, makes agreements among competitors to fix prices or rig bids per se illegal; that is, they are illegal no matter what excuse or justification is offered…

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