Business

Largest U.S. railways fixing prices to boost profits, lawsuit alleges

AP

More than two dozen major companies ranging from Campbell Soup to Kia are suing the nation’s four biggest railway companies, contending the railroads had a price-fixing scheme to illegally boost profits.

In the lawsuits filed around the U.S. on Monday, the companies say BNSF Railway Company, CSX Transportation Inc., Norfolk Southern Railway Company and Union Pacific Railroad Company conspired together to boost prices starting in 2003 by charging fuel surcharges.

The price-fixing allegations have been wending their way through the federal courts for years, and in August a federal judge denied a request for class-action status on behalf of 16,000 shippers, saying the cases would have to be brought individually or broken down into similar situations. The deadline for filing those individual cases was Monday.

Attorneys for the railway companies declined to comment or did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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