A PYMNTS Company

More “Suddenly Classic” Antitrust Cases from the New Merger Guidelines: Philadelphia National Bank and Pabst

 |  August 9, 2023

By: Steven Cernak & Luis Blanquez (The Antitrust Attorney)

In a previous article, we elaborated on the recent draft merger Guidelines introduced by the FTC and DOJ. These updated guidelines reference a number of older court rulings that may not be immediately recognizable to antitrust practitioners who have primarily focused on earlier iterations of the Guidelines over the years. In this continuation, we delve into two more of these newly established “classic cases”: Philadelphia National Bank and Pabst.

The Philadelphia National Bank (PNB) case is mentioned multiple times in the New Guidelines, serving to underscore the Supreme Court’s stance that potential efficiencies stemming from a merger cannot serve as a defense against claims of illegality. This point is emphasized through the inclusion of a footnote containing a well-known excerpt from the same case: “Congress was aware that some mergers which lessen competition may also result in economies, but it struck the balance in favor of protecting competition…”