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Cartel agreement is an agreement of companies or sections of companies having common interests to form an association or a cartel. Such agreements are designed by companies to prevent extreme or unfair competition and allocate markets, and to promote the interchange of knowledge resulting from scientific and technical research, exchange of patent rights, and standardization of products. Cartels are made illegal in the U.S by antitrust laws. This is because it forms unfair trade practice by obtaining monopoly and restricting competition in a particular industry. Even though cartels and cartel agreements are illegal in the U.S., foreign cartels influence prices within the U.S. on imported and smuggled goods that they control.