Goldman, JPMorgan, Glencore defeat U.S. lawsuit over zinc prices – by Jonathan Stempel (Reuters U.S. – January 7, 2016)

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A U.S. judge on Thursday dismissed a private antitrust lawsuit in which zinc purchasers accused affiliates of Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N), JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) and Glencore Plc (GLEN.L) of conspiring to drive up the metal’s price.

In an 87-page decision, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan said purchasers failed to show that the defendants artificially inflated zinc prices by violating the Sherman Act, a federal antitrust law.

“It remains possible that shenanigans drove up the price of physical zinc,” Forrest wrote. “But, at long last, plaintiffs have not adequately alleged that such price movement was due to a plausible antitrust violation, as opposed to parallel, unilateral conduct beyond the reach of that statutory scheme.”

Christopher Lovell, a lawyer for the purchasers, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Goldman spokesman Michael DuVally, JPMorgan spokesman Brian Marchiony and Glencore spokesman Charles Watenphul declined to comment.

The lawsuit echoes a similar case alleging aluminum price manipulation. It is among several in Manhattan in which investors and businesses accused banks and other defendants of conspiring to rig prices in financial and commodities markets. U.S. and European regulators also have examined such activity.

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