Category: Competition and Consumer Law

A Cartel Case Gets Washed Away

Just before Christmas last year Wigney J dismissed a cartel case in which the ACCC alleged that Cussons (and the other major laundry detergent manufacturers) had colluded when they simultaneously transitioned all their detergent products from a standard formula to an ‘ultra-concentrated’ formula (with concomitant repackaging and re-pricing). The case is on appeal.

Panadol v Nurofen: what a headache!

The Federal Court found that the manufacturer of Nurofen had breached the Australian Consumer Law in a decision that emphasises the importance of an adequate scientific basis when engaging in comparative advertising of a scientific nature.

Lit up! E-retailers of e-cigarettes fined for misleading conduct

The Federal Court found that three online retailers and their directors had engaged in “serious” contraventions of the Australian Consumer Law for misleading Australian consumers as to the health benefits of e-cigarettes in three separate decisions that emphasise the importance of cooperation as a mitigating factor.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v The Joystick Company Pty Ltd, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Social-Lites Pty Ltd, and Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Burden [2017] FCA 397, [2017] FCA 398, and [2017] FCA 399

Unconscionable Purchasing?

The ACCC recently won a resounding victory against Coles in an action for statutory unconscionability. Coles is one of the two large supermarket retailers in Australia. Now the ACCC’s sights are set on the other large retailer: Woolworths.

More Effective Anti-Monopolization?

The Commonwealth government’s ‘root and branch’ review of Australia’s competition laws has reached the half-way mark. Proposed reform of section 46 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 is especially controversial.

Informed Cooperation Fuels Consumer Harm?

ACCC v Informed Sources (Australia) Pty Ltd & Ors VID450/2014 – In August this year the ACCC launched Federal Court proceedings against retail petrol suppliers. The case is an important test of the application of Australia’s competition laws to ‘tacit collusion’. The ACCC has to date had minimal success in this area.