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Efficiency Gains And Structural Remedies In Merger Control

  • HELDER VASCONCELOS

This paper studies the role of structural remedies in merger control in a Cournot setting where (endogenous) mergers are motivated by prospective efficiency gains and must be submitted to an Antitrust Authority (AA) which might require partial divestiture for approval. Both positive and negative effects of merger remedies are identified. First, structural remedies create new merger opportunities to firms. Second, when divestitures are required, the AA over-fixes, i.e., goes beyond the recreation of the level of competition that existed prior to the transaction. Finally, by insisting in over-fixing, the AA may discourage firms to look for more efficient mergers, inducing a final outcome where consumers' surplus is lower than if divestitures couldn't be required. Overall, however, structural remedies are shown to be good: consumers' surplus ex-ante is higher with than without remedies.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal The Journal of Industrial Economics.

Volume (Year): 58 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 742-766

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jindec:v:58:y:2010:i:4:p:742-766
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  1. Horn, Henrik & Persson, Lars, 1996. "Endogenous Mergers in Concentrated Markets," CEPR Discussion Papers 1544, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Joseph Farrell and Carl Shapiro., 2000. "Scale Economies and Synergies in Horizontal Merger Analysis," Economics Working Papers E00-291, University of California at Berkeley.
  3. Ramon Fauli-Oller, 2000. "Takeover Waves," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(3), pages 189-210, 06.
  4. Motta, Massimo & Vasconcelos, Helder, 2005. "Efficiency gains and myopic antitrust authority in a dynamic merger game," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(9-10), pages 777-801, December.
  5. Farrell, Joseph, 2003. "Negotiation and Merger Remedies: Some Problems," Competition Policy Center, Working Paper Series qt9p72k8fn, Competition Policy Center, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  6. Helder Vasconcelos, 2005. "Tacit Collusion, Cost Asymmetries, and Mergers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(1), pages 39-62, Spring.
  7. Horn, Henrik & Persson, Lars, 1999. "The Equilibrium Ownership of an International Oligopoly," Working Paper Series 515, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  8. Morton I. Kamien & Israel Zang, 1988. "The Limits of Monopolization Through Acquisition," Discussion Papers 802, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  9. Farrell, Joseph & Shapiro, Carl, 1990. "Horizontal Mergers: An Equilibrium Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 107-26, March.
  10. Compte, Olivier & Jenny, Frederic & Rey, Patrick, 2002. "Capacity constraints, mergers and collusion," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 1-29, January.
  11. Perry, Martin K & Porter, Robert H, 1985. "Oligopoly and the Incentive for Horizontal Merger," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 219-27, March.
  12. Medvedev, A., 2004. "Structural Remedies in Merger Regulation in a Cournot Framework," Discussion Paper 2004-006, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
  13. Cabral, Luis M. B., 2003. "Horizontal mergers with free-entry: why cost efficiencies may be a weak defense and asset sales a poor remedy," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(5), pages 607-623, May.
  14. Andrei Medvedev, 2004. "Structural remedies in merger regulation in a Cournot framework," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp229, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
  15. Motta,Massimo, 2004. "Competition Policy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521016919.
  16. Petri Lehto & Mihkel M. Tombak, 1997. "Consolidations and the Sequence of Acquisitions to Monopoly," CIG Working Papers FS IV 97-22, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB), Research Unit: Competition and Innovation (CIG).
  17. Motta,Massimo, 2004. "Competition Policy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521816632.
  18. Ramon Fauli-Oller, 2000. "Takeover Waves," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(2), pages 189-210, 06.
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