DRAM price fixing

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In 2002, the United States Department of Justice, under the Sherman Antitrust Act, began a probe into the activities of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) manufacturers.[citation needed] US computer makers, including Dell and Gateway, claimed that inflated DRAM pricing was causing lost profits and hindering their effectiveness in the marketplace.[citation needed]

To date, five manufacturers have pleaded guilty to their involvement in an international price-fixing conspiracy including Hynix, Infineon, Micron Technology, Samsung, and Elpida.[1]

"In December 2003, the Department charged Alfred P. Censullo, a Regional Sales Manager for Micron Technology Inc., with obstruction of justice in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1503. Censullo pleaded guilty to the charge and admitted to having withheld and altered documents responsive to a grand jury subpoena served on Micron in June 2002."[1]

On October 20, 2004, Infineon also pled guilty. The company was fined $160M for its involvement, then the third largest antitrust fine in US history. Hynix Semiconductor soon took the third position in April 2005 with a $185M criminal penalty after they also admitted guilt. In October 2005, Samsung entered their guilty plea in connection with the cartel.[2]

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References[edit]

  1. ^ "Memory makers hit by price-fixing claims". The Register. Retrieved 2007-08-01. 
  2. ^ "SAMSUNG AGREES TO PLEAD GUILTY AND TO PAY $300 MILLION CRIMINAL FINE FOR ROLE IN PRICE FIXING CONSPIRACY" (Press release). US Department of Justice. 13 October 2005. Retrieved 30 June 2010. 

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