An outlet for insiders to speak freely (as they remain anonymous to the reader) on what they perceive as problematic practices in their own industry – with an emphasis on how the industry tweaks the rules of the game and captures regulation.
"People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices. It is impossible indeed to prevent such meetings, by any law which either could be executed, or would be consistent with liberty and justice.” Adam Smith - An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776)
The Federal Trade Commission has recently lost a series of cases seeking to prevent Big Tech mergers and acquisitions. Jay Ezrielev offers several possible explanations for why the FTC continues to pursue these bad cases and suggests how the agency can refocus its energies to better serve its mission to protect competition going forward.
Philosopher Michel Foucault is often associated with the political left. Austrian liberals, including Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek, are generally associated with libertarians or the political right. However, all shared a doubt regarding the government’s ability to use statistics and data to regulate populations and markets, writes Parv Tyagi.
Recent European digital regulation surrenders traditional key guideposts of European competition law and policy. The over-centralization of European Union antitrust authority and EU legislation risks undermining member state laws and competences. This may privilege platforms and eventually harm competition and consumers, writes Jörg Hoffmann.
Antitrust scholars and authorities are debating how antitrust can and should align with green sustainability initiatives. A recent ruling from Brazil’s antitrust authority, the Administrative Council for Economic Defense, in approving the launch of a commercial platform for agricultural commodity traders to track global supply chain sustainability metrics, presents one case study on how to advance sustainability goals without compromising competition.
Politicians and governments in the United States and elsewhere have recently proposed or implemented wealth taxes to supplement revenue and reduce wealth inequality. In a new study, Samira Marti, Isabel Z. Martínez, and Florian Scheuer show how decreases in wealth taxes led to increases in wealth inequality in Switzerland, though they find that these decreases alone are not enough to explain the magnitude of widening disparities.
In new research, Enghin Atalay, Alan Sorensen, Christopher Sullivan, and Wanjia Zhu find that mergers and acquisitions often lead to the merged firm offering less product variety than when the two firms operated pre-merger.
Vertical merger law lacks the structural presumption of horizontal merger law, which shifts the burden from the government to the merging parties to provide evidence that a merger will not produce anticompetitive effects when it is known that the merger will substantially increase market concentration. To improve Guideline 6 of the draft Merger Guidelines concerning vertical foreclosure, Steven Salop develops a three-factor criteria with which the government antitrust agencies can show an analogous structural “inference” that shifts the burden of evidence to the merging parties.
Xerox invented modern copier technology and was so successful that its brand name became a verb. In 1972, U.S. antitrust authorities charged Xerox with monopolization and eventually ordered the licensing of all its copier-related patents. As new research by Robin Mamrak shows, this antitrust intervention promoted subsequent innovation in the copier industry, but only among Japanese competitors. Nevertheless, their innovations benefited U.S. consumers.
The draft Merger Guidelines largely replace the consumer welfare standard of the Chicago School with the lessening of competition principle found in the 1914 Clayton Act. This shift would enable the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice Antitrust Division to utilize the full extent of modern economics to respond to rising concentration and its harmful effects, writes John Kwoka.
In new research, Cyril Hédoin and Alexandre Chirat use the rational-choice theory of economist Anthony Downs to explain how populism rationally arises to challenge established institutions of liberal democracy.
In a new paper, Bing Guo, Dennis C. Hutschenreiter, David Pérez-Castrillo, and Anna Toldrà-Simats study how large institutional investors impact firm innovation. The authors find that large institutional investors encourage internal research and development but discourage firm acquisitions that would add patents and knowledge to their firms’ portfolios, hampering overall innovation.
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