DEFINITION of 'Price Rigging'

An illegal action performed by a group of conspiring businesses that occurs when the firms agree to artificially inflate prices in an attempt to recognize higher profits at the expense of the consumer. Price rigging can be found in any industry and is regulated by the antitrust division of the United States Department of Justice.

Also known as "price fixing" or "collusion".

BREAKING DOWN 'Price Rigging'

For example, let's assume that the local gas stations agree to artificially inflate the price of gasoline by setting it several cents above where the price would be found under normal competition. This would be deemed price rigging, which is unlawful and can lead to severe criminal charges.

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