Thursday, August 13, 2009

As If the Economy Isn't Slowed Down Enough Already...

Tougher antitrust scrutiny from Washington is slowing deal making even as some early signs of improvement have started to appear in the mergers and acquisitions market.

Bankers and lawyers said antitrust officials appointed by President Obama have broadened and lengthened investigations and they expect more vigorous enforcement in years to come, writes Michael Erman at Reuters.

Lawyers expect health care, high technology, oil and gas and financial services deals to receive especially close looks from regulators, says Erman.

It's really bad, all the details are here.


  1. Health care? How many sides of their mouth can elected officials speak? They propose global payments and accountable care organizations, which encourages vertically integrated delivery systems.

    They also want you to not notice their similarity to capitation and managed care organizations, the universally hated delivery system. Patients and providers found the plans restrictive and intrusive.

    A Virginia system was just sued by the Justice Department. They said the acquisition of two physicians groups would result in excess charges. The system didn't raise prices after the buyout, so it's hard to find any damages. The suit didn't mention antitrust, the traditional reason for Justice Department action against health care providers. Something is screwy.

  2. Here's a link to the Virginia case, brought by the FTC: