U.S. Fifth Circuit - The FindLaw 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

Natural Gas Market Manipulation Action, and Arbitration Matter

Noble Drilling Servs. Inc. v. Certex USA, Inc., No. 10-20083, involved plaintiff's appeal from the district court's dismissal of its case pursuant to an arbitration clause incorporated into two agreements to which plaintiff was not a party.  The court reversed because no evidence supported a conclusion that plaintiff knew of the terms of the agreements, plaintiff could not have the knowledge necessary to support the "knowingly exploited" theory of direct benefits estoppel.

In Rio Grande Royalty Co. v. Energy Transfer Ptnrs., L.P., No. 09-20607, an action contending that defendants committed common law fraud by truthfully reporting natural gas transactions that, because of the defendants' alleged monopolization of the Houston spot market, served to lower prices artificially on long-term contracts, the court affirmed the dismissal of the action where defendants' alleged conduct did not amount to common law fraud.

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