Gold, silver, LIBOR, energy -- and now even beer is rigged

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As soon as we're done with gold, GATA may become BATA.

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German Brewers in Decades-Long Price Fixing Scandal

By Denise Rowland
The Telegraph, London
Tuesday, August 20, 2013

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/leisur...

Major German brewers have allegedly been fixing beer prices for 20 years, documents from a government investigation have revealed.

Bosses of large breweries in the country have admitted to investigators that a number of firms arranged to raise prices of their premium beer brands, according to reports in the German magazine Focus.

The agreements would be struck over the telephone or at the sidelines of industry meetings, the companies were reported to have said.

While details of the investigation into the alleged beer cartel have been emerging for some time, the latest reports highlight the breadth of the alleged collusion.

... Dispatch continues below ...



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Until now it was believed the price-fixing arrangements spanned only a two-year period from 2006 to 2008.

Documents seen by Focus reveal that during an interrogation in January, Volker Kuhl, head of the Veltins brewery, said large breweries would pass the price-rising agreements along to smaller producers.

"Then it often came to a branch-wide beer price increase," he was reported as saying.

The Bitburger Brewery Group and leaders of the brewery association in the country's most populous state, North Rhine-Westphalia, apparently gave similar revelations.

The companies involved now face fines in the hundreds of millions of euros, Focus reported.

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