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The Deterrence Effects of U.S. Merger Policy Instruments

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  • Clougherty, Joseph A.
  • Seldeslachts, Jo

Abstract

We estimate the deterrence effects of U.S. merger policy instruments with respect to the composition and frequency of future merger notifications. Data from the Annual Reports by the U.S. DOJ and FTC allow industry based measures over the 1986-1999 period of the conditional probabilities for eliciting investigations, challenges, prohibitions, court-wins and court-losses: deterrence variables akin to the traditional conditional probabilities from the economics of crime literature. We find the challenge-rate to robustly deter future horizontal (both relative and absolute) merger activity; the investigation-rate to slightly deter relative-horizontal merger activity; the court-loss-rate to moderately affect absolute-horizontal merger activity; and the prohibition-rate and court-win-rate to not significantly deter future horizontal mergers. Accordingly, the conditional probability of eliciting an antitrust challenge (i.e., remedies and prohibitions) involves the strongest deterrence effect from amongst the different merger policy instruments.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8482.

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Date of creation: Jul 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8482

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Keywords: antitrust; deterrence; merger policy;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Dertwinkel-Kalt, Markus & Wey, Christian, 2012. "The effects of remedies on merger activity in oligopoly," DICE Discussion Papers 81, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
  2. Orley C. Ashenfelter & Daniel Hosken & Matthew C. Weinberg, 2014. "Did Robert Bork Understate the Competitive Impact of Mergers? Evidence from Consummated Mergers," NBER Working Papers 19939, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Andreea Cosnita-Langlais & Lars Sørgard, 2014. "Enforcement vs Deterrence in Merger Control: Can Remedies Lead to Lower Welfare?," EconomiX Working Papers 2014-29, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.

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