On November 28, 2018, Judge Ambrose of the Western District of Pennsylvania named Jason Hartley of Hartley LLP as co-lead counsel on behalf of direct purchasers of diisocyanates in the pricing fixing case against major chemical manufacturers. Diisocyantes, including methyl diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) and toluene diisocyanate (TDI) are the principal ingredients, along with polyols, that make up polyurethanes. Polyurethanes are ubiquitous, found in furniture foam, casting wheels, coatings, sealants, adhesives and many other applications.
Polyurethanes affect billions of dollars of commerce every year. The federal Multi District Litigation alleges that BASF, Bayer, Covestro, DowDuPont, Huntsman, Mitsui and Wanhua conspired to raise the prices of MDI and TDI sold in the United States or to U.S. companies. The conspiracy was allegedly carried out through, among other things, coordinated plant closures meant to restrict the supply of MDI and TDI sold in the U.S. At least 14 plant closures were documented during the period 2015-2018. The complaints further allege at least 12 price increases for MDI or TDI by multiple defendants for the same date were also documented during the same time period.
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