Law School Case Brief
Fashion Originators' Guild, Inc. v. FTC - 312 U.S. 457, 61 S. Ct. 703 (1941)
Section of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C.S. § 1 et seq., makes illegal every contract, combination or conspiracy in restraint of trade or commerce among the several states; section 2 makes illegal every combination or conspiracy which monopolizes or attempts to monopolize any part of that trade or commerce.
Petitioners were a combination of manufacturers of women's garments and makers of textiles from which the garments were made. They formed an organization to protect their creations from the copying by other manufacturers. The creations were neither copyrighted nor trademarked. To destroy such competition by other manufacturers, they boycotted and declined to sell their products to retailers who sold copied garments. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) investigated the combination and concluded that the practices and understandings of the combination substantially lessened competition and tended to create a monopoly in violation of the Clayton Act, and it issued a cease-and-desist order. On appeal, the appellate court affirmed the order.
Did the lower court err in ordering petitioners to cease and desist from certain practices found to have been done in combination and to constitute "unfair methods of competition"?
Certiorari was granted because of an inconsistency in the circuits. The United States Supreme Court held that the FTC, upon adequate and unchallenged findings, correctly concluded that this practice constituted an unfair method of competition, and the Court upheld the judgment of the lower court.
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