Federal Antitrust Law–Price Discrimination–Proof and Measurement of Damages In Treble Damage Action

Section 2(a) of the Robinson-Patman Act makes it unlawful for a seller to charge buyers who compete with each other different prices for commodities of like grade and quality. Price discrimination which violates this section operates to confer an unlawful benefit upon a favored buyer by making his costs of obtaining, using, or reselling the particular commodities involved lower than the similar costs of non-favored buyers and puts non-favored buyers at a competitive disadvantage to the extent that the difference in costs affects the ability of favored and non-favored buyers to compete with one another. If this wrongfully induced competitive disadvantage results in provable damage to the business of a non-favored buyer, or if the discrimination otherwise causes provable damage to that buyer, section 4 of the Clayton Act enables him to recover three times the amount of damage proved.