For those concerned about the fate of Dallas-based Reddy Ice, which had its offices raided by in March by Department of Justice officials looking for evidence of price fixing, this morning The Wall Street Journal provides an update. Looks like the FBI discovered, via wiretapping, that some ice industry execs were chitchatting over the phone about an alleged conspiracy to fix the price of ice, which sells for $1.8 billion annually. An exec at another ice maker tipped off the feds, who turned up the heat in Detroit in 2005, where a Cincinnati-based company was engaged in competition suppression. The Justice Department finally came down to Dallas three years later.
And while no one in Dallas has been charged with anything and Reddy officials say they're cooperating with the government, the WSJ notes that Reddy, the largest maker of packaged ice in the U.S., said "its board formed an independent committee to conduct an internal investigation." And that's all Reddy's execs are saying. Meanwhile, its stock has plummeted this morning, dropping 63 cents thus far; it's now down to $10.36. --Robert Wilonsky
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