THE TRANS-MISSOURI CASE: DOES THE SHERMAN ACT APPLY TO THE RAILROADS?

Michael Landry, Richard D. Stone

Abstract


In 1887, in answer to railroad abuses of monopoly power, Congress passed the Interstate Commerce Act, which created the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC). In the next decade the Commission’s powers were considerably diminished by a series of Supreme Court decisions in cases in which the railroads appealed ICC rulings. In only one case during this period, the United States v. Trans-Missouri Freight Association, did the Court uphold an ICC decision. This case was primarily about collaborative ratemaking in rate bureaus but covered several larger issues, especially the possibly conflicting jurisdictions of the Sherman Act and the Interstate Commerce Act.

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