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Masters of the Universe: How Private Equity Firms Engaged in Big Rigging

April 4, 2019

Professor & Chair Williams

In a case of unlawful collusion among some of the world's largest private equity firms, Professor & Chair Melanie Stallings Williams co-authored a paper where economists, using auction theory, showed that antitrust violations cost shareholders $12 billion. http://csunshinetoday.csun.edu/media-releases/economists-use-auction-theory-to-show-private-equity-firms-rigged-the-bidding-in-leveraged-buyouts-at-expense-of-shareholders/ Read more

Economists Use Auction Theory to Show Private Equity Firms Rigged the Bidding in Leveraged Buyouts at Expense of Shareholders

April 3, 2019

Melanie Williams

Professor Melanie Stallings Williams co-authored an article, “Masters of the Universe: Bid Rigging By Private Equity Firms in Multibillion Dollar LBOs,” for the University of Cincinnati Law Review that throws the spotlight on a rare class-action lawsuit in which the plaintiffs – shareholders in companies purchased – demonstrated that some of the world’s largest private equity firms unlawfully colluded to ensure that they held down prices on the companies they were bidding to buy.

“I don’t think people realize that when this happens, it’s our money, yours and mine, that’s involved,” Williams said. “Yes, some of the shareholders are monied people, but some of the shareholders are retirement funds and the type of mutual funds that your grandmother owns. These aren’t just rich people they are taking advantage of. It’s you, me and the people we care about.” Read more

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