354PART FIVEFIRM BEHAVIOR AND THE ORGANIZATION OF INDUSTRYCARTELS ARE RARE, IN PART BECAUSE THEantitrust laws make them illegal. As thefollowing article describes, however,ocean shipping firms enjoy an unusualexemption from these laws and, as a re-sult, charge higher prices than they oth-erwise would.A s U . S . Tr a d e G r o w s , S h i p p i n gC a r t e l s G e t a B i t M o r e S c r u t i n yBYANNAWILDEMATTHEWSRUTHERFORD, N.J.—Every two weeks, inan unobtrusive office building here,about 20 shipping-line managers gatherfor their usual meeting. They sit around along conference table, exchange smalltalk over bagels and coffee and then be-gin discussing what they will charge tomove cargo across the Atlantic Ocean.All very routine, except for one de-tail: They don’t work for the same com-pany. Each represents a differentshipping line, supposedly competing forbusiness. Under U.S. antitrust law, mostpeople doing this would end up in court.But shipping isn’t like other busi-nesses. Many of the world’s big shippinglines, from Sea-Land Service Inc. of theU.S. to A. P. Moller/Maersk Line of Den-mark, are members of a little-noticed
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Shipping, Competition law, cartels, United States antitrust law