In August 2009, U.S. District Court Judge Robert T. Dawson ruled in favor of Compass Lexecon’s client CHEP USA by denying plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in a suit alleging that CHEP violated Sherman Act Section 2 through its alleged efforts to monopolize the market for 40” x 48” wood pallets in the continental United States. Judge Dawson reached his decision in part by relying on the analysis of Compass Lexecon expert Dan Rubinfeld. Professor Rubinfeld demonstrated, and the judge agreed, that plaintiffs had failed to properly define a relevant market. In particular, Professor Rubinfeld’s analysis showed that due to relatively high shipping costs, there were numerous localized relevant geographic markets rather than the single continental U.S. market alleged by plaintiffs. Professor Rubinfeld also argued that plaintiffs’ proposed sampling methodology was incapable of demonstrating class-wide impact. Professor Rubinfeld was supported by a team in the Oakland office including Jim Ratliff, Simon Rosen, Kristin George, Blake Phillips, and Sarah Bartlett. CHEP was successfully represented by Bill Kolasky of Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr LLP.
- Daniel L. Rubinfeld
- James Ratliff