Monday, April 30th 2018

Samsung, Micron, and Hynix Accused of DRAM Price Fixing

Law firm Hagens Berman has filed a class action lawsuit against Samsung, Micron, and Hynix in the US District Court for the Northern District of California. According to the firm's investigation, the three DRAM manufacturers conspired to limit the supply of DRAM chips between 2016 and 2017 with the purpose of inflating their prices. The firm affirmed that DRAM saw a 47 percent increase in price during 2017, which made it the largest jump ever in the last 30 years. As noted by the filing, Samsung, Micron and Hynix collectively own 96 percent of the worldwide DRAM market as of 2017. The "conduct changed abruptly" when the Chinese government launched an investigation to look into the matter. This class action is opened to consumers in the U.S. who've purchased a device that uses DRAM between July 1, 2016 and February 1, 2018.

"What we've uncovered in the DRAM market is a classic antitrust, price-fixing scheme in which a small number of kingpin corporations hold the lion's share of the market," stated Hagens Berman managing partner Steve Berman. "Instead of playing by the rules, Samsung, Micron and Hynix chose to put consumers in a chokehold, wringing the market for more profit."
This isn't Hagens Berman's first time to the rodeo either. The firm had previously achieved a $300 million settlement for consumers who paid high prices for DRAM back in 2006. Samsung and Hynix pleaded guilty to the charges and paid a collective sum of $731 million in criminal fines, and both DRAM manufacturers served a collective 3,185 days of jail time. Source: AppleInsider
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49 Comments on Samsung, Micron, and Hynix Accused of DRAM Price Fixing

#1
trparky
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
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#2
Ahhzz
trparky, post: 3835543, member: 170376"
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
Is there really any other type?
Posted on Reply
#3
Caqde
trparky, post: 3835543, member: 170376"
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
Well I got something (not much) from the last one. But at least you will get something I guess although probably around 2025 or later.
Posted on Reply
#4
R-T-B
Ahhzz, post: 3835544, member: 49663"
Is there really any other type?
I don't know, I made almost $80.00 from one of those suits. But I bought a lot of ram AND it took a godawful amount of time.
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#5
ironwolf
IIRC, I got a cool $30 from the GTX 970 class action suit. So getting anything like that wouldn't be so bad.
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#6
ppn
so do we get lower prices now, i'd like a pair of 16Gb at 80$.
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#7
deu
I am.. SOOO surprised but this! /s-end .

It is properbly one if the most obvious cases of pricefixing seen from the outside of the business. I understand that the need for RAM have risen, but the fact that my '16GB DDR3 2133mhz CL9' (Which was semi highend due to timing), costed half of what today asking price is today for 2400 mhz DDR4 is ridiculous. The process and fab size have been refined, and arguing that supply and demand is the source of this 100% rise counter to ALL other it related production is naive. Some fabs have had damages, the supply and demand have sky rocketed; If they did not have the monopoly from a production point of view, new players would have decimated their pricingschemes. This was too good a profit to let go to the big boys; lets hope the get punished accordingly.
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#8
Kohl Baas
deu, post: 3835569, member: 164351"
I am.. SOOO surprised but this! /s-end .

It is properbly one if the most obvious cases of pricefixing seen from the outside of the business. I understand that the need for RAM have risen, but the fact that my '16GB DDR3 2133mhz CL9' (Which was semi highend due to timing), costed half of what today asking price is today for 2400 mhz DDR4 is ridiculous. The process and fab size have been refined, and arguing that supply and demand is the source of this 100% rise counter to ALL other it related production is naive. Some fabs have had damages, the supply and demand have sky rocketed; If they did not have the monopoly from a production point of view, new players would have decimated their pricingschemes. This was too good a profit to let go to the big boys; lets hope the get punished accordingly.
The KIT that I actually use in my computer has 50% higher price than a year ago, when I bought it. Time is passing, faster and bigger DRAM kits coming month to month, yet all the prices are rising. Building a computer from new, op-to-date components is starting to become a luxury. DRAM prices because high demand, VGA prices because mining, M/B prices because the shrinking market, CPU is the only thing where you have something, but only because AMD finally got a good one too.
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#9
delshay
An user on this site open a thread on TPU not to long ago, stating how can a motherboard be cheaper than DDR memory. IF you think about it, that user is right.

How can a motherboard, which has more components, more complex chipsets, but is cheaper than DDR memory. Something is clearly wrong here.
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#10
dj-electric
Not enough people are vocal about this = they gonna keep controlling the market at will
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#11
DarkOCean
What about the Gpu market? they're obviously doing the same thing not to mention they increased prices systematically on every segment over the past 9 years or so .
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#12
Th3pwn3r
I signed up for the case. Every bit that gets taken from them the better.
Posted on Reply
#13
Shihabyooo
trparky, post: 3835543, member: 170376"
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
If it gives the cartels another reason to not do what cartels do, the lawyers can have the money...

DarkOCean, post: 3835596, member: 65409"
What about the Gpu market? they're obviously doing the same thing not to mention they increased prices systematically on every segment over the past 9 years or so .
Price increase over the years can easily be explained with a simple concept: Inflation.

Has there been an increase in costs per chips to AiBs, and assembled units to distributors?
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#15
windwhirl
Is it wrong that I feel like this right now?
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#16
Fleurious
Better increase RAM prices to pay for their defence.
Posted on Reply
#17
Anvirol
trparky, post: 3835543, member: 170376"
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
I don't care about the money part, but I'll be happy if the groups or individuals behind this cartel get jail time.
The next CEOs might think twice before turning to crime, if the previous decision makers are in jail.
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#18
Countryside
Oh the sweet taste of capitalism strikes again.
Posted on Reply
#19
Patriot
ironwolf, post: 3835565, member: 94359"
IIRC, I got a cool $30 from the GTX 970 class action suit. So getting anything like that wouldn't be so bad.
Submitted receipts and serials for 4x 970s got $0
Posted on Reply
#20
bug
trparky, post: 3835543, member: 170376"
Oh sure... let's have a class action lawsuit where us regular folks will be lucky to get a few dollars meanwhile the lawyers walk away with bank.
Well, we get less inflated priced back it this pans out.

In other news:
What we've uncovered in the DRAM market is a classic antitrust, price-fixing scheme in which a small number of kingpin corporations hold the lion's share of the market. Instead of playing by the rules, Samsung, Micron and Hynix chose to put consumers in a chokehold, wringing the market for more profit.
I'm glad the big lawfirm "uncovered" what I've learnt in Economy 101: if you allow mergers till there are only a handful of businesses left, those businesses will be super-careful not to upset each other (oh look, Wikipedia knows it, too: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oligopoly). Now, if only the rulemakers would take stock and supervise oligopolies as they should...
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#21
Final_Fighter
delshay, post: 3835578, member: 171810"
An user on this site open a thread on TPU not to long ago, stating how can a motherboard be cheaper than DDR memory. IF you think about it, that user is right..
ya, and the majority of comments were negative and bashed him.
Posted on Reply
#22
Countryside
Final_Fighter, post: 3835690, member: 151670"
ya, and the majority of comments were negative and bashed him.
It happens when society is filled with ignorant and uneducated people.
Posted on Reply
#23
bug
Countryside, post: 3835694, member: 131094"
It happens when society is filled with ignorant and uneducated people.
Well, nothing on the motherboard is normally made on fab nodes as small as DRAM, so that could be an argument in favor of higher DRAM prices.
Idk whether the guy was right or not (I haven't read that thread), but historically, the complexity/price ratio never leaned towards the motherboard anyway.
Posted on Reply
#24
Countryside
bug, post: 3835695, member: 157434"
Well, nothing on the motherboard is normally made on fab nodes as small as DRAM, so that could be an argument in favor of higher DRAM prices.
Idk whether the guy was right or not (I haven't read that thread), but historically, the complexity/price ratio never leaned towards the motherboard anyway.
My previous reply is about thous who just bash others because they are unable to have an enlightened discussion.

Anyway now an Asus Prime x370pro a damn good mobo is priced at 140euros and the cheapest ddr4 2x8 kit is 165eur
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#25
bug
I only meant, even those that bashed may have been right, in a way. But yes, this is the internet, they were probably just talking/typing crap.
Posted on Reply
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