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The antitrust laws, which are primarily found in the United States Code at 15 USC 1 et seq, apply to virtually all industries and to every level of business, including manufacturing, transportation, distribution, and marketing. These laws prohibit a variety of practices that restrain trade, such as price-fixing conspiracies, corporate mergers likely to reduce the competitive vigor of particular markets, and predatory acts designed to achieve or maintain monopoly power.

The historic goal of the antitrust laws is to protect economic freedom and opportunity by promoting competition in the marketplace. Competition in a free market benefits consumers through lower prices, better quality, and greater choice. Competition provides businesses the opportunity to compete on price and quality, in an open market, and on a level playing field unhampered by anticompetitive restraints. Competition also tests and hardens American companies at home, the better to succeed abroad.

Antitrust Guidelines for the Licensing of Intellectual Property 
Issued by the United States Department of Justice 
and the Federal Trade Commission
April 6, 1995