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News Link • Economy - International

Market-Rigging In Unsexy Industries Is Worse Than People Realize

•,The Economist
But at least as damaging are the many secret cartels in such unglamorous areas as ball-bearings and cargo rates, which go on unnoticed for years, quietly bumping up the end cost to consumers of all manner of goods and services.

Collusion among producers to rig prices and carve up markets is thriving, with the cartels growing ever more intricate and global in scope.

Competition authorities have uncovered several whopping conspiracies in recent years, including one in which more than 20 airlines worldwide had fixed prices on perhaps $20 billion of freight shipments. They were fined a total of $3 billion; and so far the compensation claims from ripped-off customers comfortably exceed $1 billion.

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