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Is European M&A Regulation Protectionist?

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  • Nihat Aktas
  • Eric de Bodt
  • Richard Roll

Abstract

Why do regulatory authorities scrutinise mergers and acquisitions? The authorities themselves claim to be combating monopoly power and protecting consumers. But the last two decades of empirical research has found little supporting evidence for such motives. An alternative is that M&A regulation is actually designed to protect privileged firms. We provide a test of protectionism by studying whether European regulatory intervention is more likely when European firms are harmed by increased competition. Our findings raise a suspicion of protectionist motivations by the European regulator during the 1990s. The results are robust to many statistical difficulties, including endogeneity between investor valuations and regulatory actions. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 117 (2007)
Issue (Month): 522 (07)
Pages: 1096-1121

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:522:p:1096-1121

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Cited by:
  1. Campa, Jose M. & Moschieri, Caterina, 2008. "The European M&A industry: Trends, patterns and shortcomings," IESE Research Papers D/762, IESE Business School.
  2. Campbell, Cynthia J. & Cowan, Arnold R. & Salotti, Valentina, 2010. "Multi-country event-study methods," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(12), pages 3078-3090, December.
  3. Panagiotis Fotis & Michael Polemis & Nikolaos Zevgolis, 2011. "Robust Event Studies for Derogation from Suspension of Concentrations in Greece during the Period 1995–2008," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 67-89, March.
  4. Carletti, Elena & Hartmann, Philipp & Ongena, Steven, 2011. "The Economic Impact of Merger Control Legislation," CEPR Discussion Papers 8447, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Marshall, Ben R. & Anderson, Hamish D., 2009. "Regulation and target takeover returns: Is there a link?," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 395-412, September.
  6. Keller, Andreas, 2010. "Competition effects of mergers: An event study of the German electricity market," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 5264-5271, September.
  7. Carletti, Elena & Hartmann, Philipp & Onega, Steven, 2007. "The economic impact of merger control legislation," CFS Working Paper Series 2008/04, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).

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