25 Feb 2011 Cases

Moundridge Appellate Decision

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On February 25, 2011, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed the District Court’s 2009 grant of summary judgment to Exxon Mobil, BP America, ConocoPhillips, and Shell, Compass Lexecon’s clients. These firms hired Compass Lexecon expert Professor Joseph P. Kalt to assess Plaintiffs’ claims that the Defendants had colluded to fix the price of natural gas sold in North America. Professor Kalt’s analysis found that there was no evidence of market concentration and, more fundamentally, that there was no credible evidence of any parallel or coordinated conduct among the Defendants with respect to supply or pricing decisions. The initial grant of summary judgment relied heavily on Professor Kalt’s analysis which demonstrated that Defendants’ behavior simply reflected independent, self-interested conduct. The Appeals Court concurred, emphasizing that the Plaintiffs failed to meet their affirmative burden to present evidence that “tends to exclude the possibility that the alleged conspirators acted independently.” We worked with legal teams representing each of the Defendant companies including counsel at White & Case LLP, Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, Howrey LLP and Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

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