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Court of Bologna, 23 January 2006, N. 254/2006

Unfair competition may occur also in respect of traders operating in the same field and with the same outlet market, even if with different size and turn-over. Addressing to the end customers statements that disparage a trader as well as exerting pressures aimed at diverting the customers to the detriment of the disparaged trader amount to unfair competition according to article 2598 civil code. Although the evidence of the causality nexus between the diminution of the turnover of the disparaged entity and the unfair behaviour of the competitor is lacking, it is possible to grant fair damages in favour of the former. In fact the predominant case law deems that all the facets of a damage, including the frustration of the expectations caused by reputation's jeopardy infringement that reduces the possibility of success of the trader and affects its attitude to interpersonal relationships, are always related to the monetary part of the damage. The evaluation of the damages has to be made by the fair appreciation of the judge.

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