Remember that investigation into whether Apple, Google, Intel, IBM, and other big tech companies had a secret agreement not to poach each other’s employees?Well, government investigators have found enough to be concerned about that they’re stepping up the probe.
The government’s theory is that the collusion keeps salaries artificially low and that this is as serious a problem as price-fixing.
The companies, meanwhile, say they can’t very well raid each other’s staffs constantly if they ever want to maintain strong business partnerships.
The Justice Department is stepping up its investigation into hiring practices at some of America’s biggest companies, including Google Inc., Intel Corp., International Business Machines Corp., Apple Inc. and IAC/InterActiveCorp., people familiar with the matter said.
The inquiry is focused on whether companies, particularly in the technology sector, have agreed not to recruit each others’ employees in ways that violate antitrust law. Specifically, the probe is looking into whether the companies’ hiring practices are costing skilled computer engineers and other workers opportunities to change jobs for higher pay or better benefits.
After a probe that began more than a year ago, Justice Department investigators have concluded that such agreements do raise significant competitive concerns, according to the people familiar with the matter…
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