On February 20, 1974 a civil complaint for declarative and injunctlve relief was filed by Consumers Union and one Linda Blitz against the American Express Company and the U.S. Shoe Retail Corporation under section 1 of the Sherman Act.^ American Express and U.S. Shoe Retail were charged with being in restraint of trade. Specifically the companies were charged with being parties to a "restrictive contract", which "eliminates price competition in the sale of goods and services to cash customers and credit card customers...", and with imposing a tie in sale. Both activities are viewed in the law as being in restraint of trade. The provision of the contract to which objection was made read as follows:
This paper was published in Journal of Law and Economics Vol. 19, No. 1 (Apr., 1976), pp. 163-175
O'Driscoll, Gerald P. Jr., "The American Express Case: Public Good or Monopoly?" (1975). Economic Staff Paper Series. 180.