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Maple Flooring Manufacturers Association v. United States

268 U.S. 563 (1925)

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Maple Flooring Manufacturers Association v. United States

United States Supreme Court

268 U.S. 563 (1925)

Facts

The Maple Flooring Manufacturers Association (MFMA) was an unincorporated trade association consisting of 22 companies that produced and sold wood flooring. The companies operated primarily out of the Midwestern United States, and in 1922, MFMA members accounted for 70 percent of all wood flooring produced in the United States. As part of their membership, members of MFMA engaged in information sharing about their products and the market conditions of the industry as a whole. For example, MFMA members were distributed the average cost of different types of flooring, as well as a pamphlet featuring the standard freight rate from Cadillac, Michigan, to many different destinations across the United States. The members also met to discuss industry conditions and share their opinions on how to address problems. The United States (plaintiff) believed these activities constituted a conspiracy to reduce competition in the market for wood flooring and brought a complaint against MFMA, alleging antitrust violations. The district court found for the United States, holding that MFMA’s information sharing and meetings were likely to reduce competition. MFMA appealed the decision.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Stone, J.)

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