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Justice Department Uses 1914 Law to Keep Directors From Serving on Competing Boards

  • DOJ action likely to hit private equity, other financial firms
  • Rarely invoked law prohibits overlapping board directors
The Department of Justice building in Washington, DC.

The Department of Justice building in Washington, DC.

Photographer: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg
Updated on

Directors are stepping down from the boards of five public technology companies after the US Justice Department raised antitrust concerns about individuals advising competing businesses -- the opening salvo in an economy-wide push likely to hit private equity and other financial investment firms.   

The action announced Wednesday marks the DOJ’s first foray in an initiative to enforce a rarely invoked 1914 law against so-called interlocking directorates, where individuals or entities sit on the board of directors for two companies that directly compete with one another.