Antitrust are laws that are enforced to prohibit anti-competitive and unfair, practices by businesses. The term is driven from word trust meaning group of companies joining up together to divide upmarket and limit competition.
But of late the word trust implies the cartels. Examples of this can be the forceful elimination of the competitor using “Predatory Pricing”, where competitors may reduce the price of the services to such extent that the other competitors cannot cope, and it is because of such constraints that they cannot cling on to the business. The innovator company establishes a monopoly primarily by creating legal barriers like patients, excessive advertising, excessive low pricing (predatory pricing), control of resources, control of supply chain, and vertical integration. Similarly, the control of prices is possible only by industry majors that can lower the product prices to such extent that will cause loss to the other companies (Allan, 2010).
The Antitrust laws are enforced to ensure there is the protection of consumers’ welfare by prohibiting unfair and deceptive business practices, preservation and protection of competition, preserving the values and customers in town in America, and protecting independent and small business firms from economic pressure from the larger business competition. Acts like Sherman, Clayton, and Federal Trade Commission’s acts have been put in place to enhance Antitrust laws.
Exceptions to Antitrust laws apply to organizations like major league baseball, labor unions, insurance companies (regulated by the State Law), agricultural cooperatives, and business transactions related to national defense. Monopolistic firms that use their market dominance to restrain commerce, hurt consumers, and compete unfairly are found guilty of going against the antitrust laws (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
Corporate governance puts in place the values of democracy as accountability, transparency, responsibility, and fairness into corporations that may be enjoying monopoly in delivering key goods and services to the economy as electricity, water and sewerage, broadcasting, and telecommunication. It maintains the integrity of transactions carried out as these firms do their businesses hence ensuring adherence to democracy of governance and strengthening the rule of the law. Corporate provides the antidote for corruption by clarifying both the public interest and private firms’ rights, thereby preventing abuses of any of them (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
Congress passed Sarbanes-Oxley Acts in June 2001 as a response to the collapsing of many high profile firms since late 2001 to enhance corporate governance, thereby restoring public confidence. This act has put in place significant changes in both the scope and management reporting responsibilities and the roles of the auditor (Clyde, 1997).
The Acts provided for the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, prohibited auditors from performing non-audit services to their clients, called for more detailed and on-time disclosure of financial information and put in place greater criminal penalties for corporate fraud (Allan, 2010).
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act consists of two accounting bills as seen. Sarbanes and Oxley’s were passed by Congress on July, 25th 2002. These were triggered by the collapse of Eron in late 2001 exposing an unprecedented accounting scandal that seriously corrupted the governance systems. The events leading to these acts are exclusively addressed in Wall Street Journal’s (WSJ) and Washington Point (WP) from November 2001 to July 2002 (Allan, 2010).
The antitrust concept covers many more illegal activities that are conducted by competitors. All this leads to deteriorating relations and even the business of the area deteriorates.
The research questions are, ‘what are the antitrust issues in the 21st century?’ And, “How the antitrust issues impact ASCM?”( Areeda, 2011)
For example, looking at Antitrust issues in high-tech industries, the industries characteristics like the rapid pace of innovation, criticality in intellectual property, high presence of network effects, low marginal and large fixed cost, and first-mover advantages poses greater challenges to the applicability of antitrust laws to this technical and highly developing industry (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
The antitrust economics solutions, both applied and theoretical have been in operation for about fifty years resting on the structuralism approach to markets policy instruments and competition. Its main structure shared with the heuristic model of industrial organization is based on the structure-performance and conduct, and that structure of the market should be the main determinant of business conduct and the strategy should have fewer degrees of freedom from limitations imposed by these structural conditions (Clyde, 1997).
The Schumpeterian/neo-Schumpeterian approach suggests a theoretical system alternative based on a dynamic theory of competition instead of using structuralism or static equilibrium analysis of mechanism in the market, especially the neoclassical microeconomics, but models the market based on antitrust analysis that works on the stimulus and protection to competition (Areeda, 2011). Under this approach, competition is not opposed to monopoly, but that monopoly is an instance of competition. Competition is seen as an interactive process among the units of the economy to increase capital value and appropriation of profits. While disequilibrium is seen as a norm as it results from core competitions (Allan, 2010).
To effectively give the importance of the subject and the extent of the impact of anti-trust and unfair trade practices on business productivity and consumer satisfaction; the search on the impact resulting revealed a total of more than 5 articles, but the researchers considered the most relevant ones. The research goes into detail to display the extent of the impact of anti-trust and unfair trade practices on business productivity and consumer satisfaction. The research articles were considered to give a general view of the anti-trust and unfair trade practices on business productivity and consumer satisfaction (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
According to Tirole, a human being is subject to feelings and emotions on anti-trust and unfair trade practices about business productivity and consumer satisfaction (Tirole, 1989). It is an inevitable fact that human activities are affected by the way their emotions are at the time. It is wise therefore that the emotions are programmed in such a manner that they are benefitting the organization (Areeda, 2011).
Within any given society there is always a framework of the emotions that are anticipated within a given situation. But, there are standard anticipated emotions that are applicable in a given situation that must be enhanced to have effective profitability. To effectively explain the facts that surround this concept she uses the phrase “anti-trust and unfair trade practices: the dynamic corporate environment” (Areeda, 2011). This is explained as using the given fact to emphasize and enhance the profitability of the firm (Tirole, 1989).
The author further points out the fact that there have many rising cases of “anti-trust and unfair trade practices on business productivity and consumer satisfaction” across the globe. It is therefore important to check the suitability of any given kind of anti-trust and unfair trade practices on business productivity and consumer satisfaction. This applies to all parts of the organization, the interactive parts of the organization. If the researchers can effectively identify this aspect and how the researchers can capitalize and enhance this moment then the organization is likely to get more from in terms of productivity (Tirole, 1989). It should be noted that this will be coupled with rising customer demands and satisfaction.
In the business environment, for instance, the researchers have different calibers and cadres of professionals that are involved in client satisfaction. Any given group of professionals will have their emotions guided by the level of interaction between the researcher, them, and their clients. For instance, the technical department may have fewer effects of consumer satisfaction on their customers as compared to the client support department (Tirole, 1989). Since the productivity of the business is determined by the efforts of the whole organization it is prudent for these determining factors to be effectively applied. While quality products and service delivery have been considered central to the attempt to gain and retain customers by the sellers, it has also been associated with certain unintended and adverse outcomes for the service employees which may have the overall consequence of destroying the superior customer service it purports to create in the first instance (Tirole, 1989).
The Monopoly, Oligopoly and market Power in antitrust policy
Monopolistic in the antitrust analysis is treated under the static criterion of microeconomics as the maximization of high profits at low quantity because of being a single supplier of a good or service in a market. Market power is the ability to set prices above the unit and marginal cost to maximize profits above the normal rates. Oligopolistic involves cartels of firms, tracing back to Chamberlin, it assumes joint maximization of profits. Oligopoly cannot be classified as a monopoly when they have differentiated products (Tirole, 1989).
Antitrust Laws reforms
The political party’s reformers in the US during the 1994 and 1996 election cycles promised to roll back state excesses, with a fundamental re-thinking of antitrust regulations. The antitrust should be protecting the consumers by monitoring monopoly, but it does invite exploitation of the public by well-doing businesses through hobbling of competitors and giving incentives causing terrible damage to greater heights. The antitrust today enjoys bigger and higher profile actions in business activities of those against Wal-Mart, Microsoft, and the proposal of Staples and Office Depot ongoing merger proposals. With advocates of the free market giving a blind spot when it comes to antitrust (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
The research would be conducted through a survey method. The 20 people would be selected from ASCM to participate in the in-depth interview that would be conducted to collect data. The data collected through recorded interviews should be transcribed verbatim and analyzed using both the qualitative research methodology and a bit of quantitative (Allan, 2010).
The research philosophy and stance focus on the positivist rather than the interpretive stance and reality. It is assumed that the subject under study is not observable on anti-trust and unfair trade practices, but can be measured to some extent. The research intends to carefully isolate facts, contrary to feelings or meanings, which are evaluated against the feature. Research context to the extent that the research will attempt to identify a link between researchers’ anti-trust and unfair trade practices, attitudinal and behavioral consequences with adverse effects on the employee; it can be described as causal rather than merely descriptive or explanatory (Tirole, 1989).
The scope of the research under study is the anti-trust and unfair trade practices in the entire business industry. The researchers emphasize is on encouraging business practices that have the strategic aim of attaining quality customer delivery, and the subject interest under the research study is the consumers, especially in corporate and business ventures (Areeda, 2011). The research conducted eighteen months is broken down as follows: the first six months: the emphasis is laid on the formulation of literature and data collection to accurately understand the problem under study and further refine the research problem. More resources will be directed to the formulation of the survey questionnaire to be used in the study (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). A comprehensive view will facilitate the conceptual framework and the research hypothesis formulated to be used for the study.
In the second six months, the attention will be directed to the pre-testing and the administration of the questionnaire survey to be used in the study. The activities carried out in this stage are the collection of data, evaluation, and analysis of data. Importantly, a pilot study is conducted under this stage (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
The third Six months: during this period the presentation and reporting of the findings are done. The report is refined to meet the academic standards (benchmarks), consequently for the researchers by the defense of the report findings on the impact of anti-trust and unfair trade practices in the entire economy (Tirole, 1989).
There are various research designs available for this study and the research will be designed in the form of a case study. The focus will be on the anti-trust and unfair trade practices as the findings are generalized as the entire corporate business. Anti-trust and unfair trades practices are chosen because it is among the major areas of concern and therefore more representatives. Besides, the researcher is more familiar with it (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
The primary data collected were obtained through structured questionnaires that are administered to the respondents via phones, one-on-one, internet, and posts. The research focused cuss on the anti-trust and unfair trade practices, which have many varied expansive factors making it hard for the practical feasibility of the in-depth study(Areeda, 2011). There is one anti-trust and unfair trade practice that has been via the purposive sampling techniques, to be used for the study, and the result generalized to the entire business industry. Therefore, based on this evaluation, the research is regarded as deductive and not inductive. Besides, in three random sampling techniques, 20 respondents are to be chosen from among the entire business consumers, and the structured questionnaires given to them (Allan, 2010).
Results & Conclusion
The data analysis would transform into narrative results and the conclusion would be reached. The research would also make recommendations to ward off the negative effects of antitrust on ASCM. For instance: the sellers are anticipated to show appropriate business ethics to the clients. If this is to be achieved then they must be drilled to always indicate this while in the business, on the other hand, it is prudent that the organization enhances the best business environment so that they are not subjected to harsh trade conditions. The traders are supposed to be the face of any business venture and thus they should be in a position to give a positive outlook of the same.
Allan, F.(2010). A Model of Antitrust Regulatory Strategy. New York, Irvine Publishers.
Areeda, P. E. (2011). Fundamentals of Antitrust Law 4e.Oxford: Aspen Publishers.
Clyde, W.(1997). Antitrust Policy AsCorporate Welfare. New York, NY: Irvine Publishers.
Sullivan, A., & Sheffrin, S. M. (2003). Economics: Principles in action. New Jersey, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.
Tirole, J. (1989). The Theory of Industrial Organization. Massachusetts: The MIT Press.