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Clayton Antitrust Act

PASSED BY THE U.S. CONGRESS in 1914, the Clayton Antitrust Act supplemented and strengthened the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890. Addressing specific anti-competition practices and problems within the Sherman Act, the Clayton Act's clarifications allowed the federal government to better deal with companies which had monopolies over certain U.S. industries.

The Sherman Act's powers were utilized heavily during the presidencies of Theodore Roosevelt and William Taft in the early 1900s. The act prohibited any action by private firms that would avoid or prevent the natural regulatory action of the U.S. market system. It worked to encourage a healthy and decentralized market structure based upon industry rivalries and competition.

Authorized by the Sherman Antitrust Act in order to maintain competition, the U.S. attorney general is permitted to bring ...

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