FTC v. A. E. Staley Mfg. Co.
324 U.S. 746 (1945)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

FTC v. A. E. Staley Mfg. Co., 324 U.S. 746 (1945)

Federal Trade Commission v. A. E. Staley Manufacturing Co.

No. 559

Argued February 28, 1945

Decided April 23, 1945

324 U.S. 746

Syllabus

1. The price discriminations involved in respondents' basing-point delivered price system and in certain "booking" practices were prohibited by § 2(a) of the Clayton Act. Corn Products Refining Co. v. Federal Trade Comm'n, ante p. 324 U. S. 726. P. 324 U. S. 750.

2. The evidence in this case supports the finding of the Federal Trade Commission that respondents' price discriminations were not made "in good faith" to meet equally low prices of competitors within the meaning of the proviso of § 2(b) of the Clayton Act. P. 324 U. S. 758.

(a) The determination from the evidence whether respondents acted "in good faith" to meet a competitor's equally low prices within the meaning of § 2(b) of the Act is for the Commission. P. 324 U. S. 758.

(b) Respondents' showing that they adopted and followed the basing-point system of their competitors did not, under § 2(b), justify their price discriminations. P. 324 U. S. 753.

(c) That respondents' prices are lower than those they might have charged, but never did charge, does not tend to show the establishment of a lower price to meet an equally low price of a competitor. P. 324 U. S. 755.

3. The Commission's finding that respondents failed to meet the burden of rebutting the prima facie case of price discriminations involved in their booking practices, since they had failed to show that their lower prices were "made in good faith to meet an equally low price of a competitor," is supported by the evidence. P. 324 U. S. 759.

(a) The appraisal of the evidence and the inferences to be drawn therefrom are for the Commission, not the courts. P. 324 U. S. 760.

(b) Section 2(b) requires that the seller who has knowingly discriminated in price show at least the existence of facts which would lead a reasonable and prudent person to believe that the granting of a lower price would in fact meet the equally low price of a competitor. P. 324 U. S. 759.

144 F.2d 221, reversed.

Page 324 U. S. 747

Certiorari, 323 U.S. 702, to review a judgment which set aside an order of the Federal Trade Commission in a proceeding under § 11 of the Clayton Act.

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