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Preventing innovative cooperations: the legal exemptions unintended side effect

  • Christian Growitsch

    ()

  • Nicole Nulsch

    ()

  • Margarethe Rammerstorfer

    ()

In 2004, European competition law had been faced with considerable changes due to the introduction of the new Council Regulation No. 1/2003. One of the major renewals was the replacement of the centralized notification system for inter-company cooperations in favor of a so-called legal exemption system. We analyze the implications of this reform on the agreements firms implement. In contrast to previous research we focus on the reform’s impact on especially welfare enhancing, namely innovative agreements. We show that the law’s intention to reduce the incentive to establish illegal cartels will be reached. However, by the same mechanism, also highly innovative cooperations might be prevented. To avoid this unintended effect, we conclude that only fines but not the monitoring activities should be increased in order to deter illegal but not innovative agreements.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10657-010-9184-9
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Article provided by Springer in its journal European Journal of Law and Economics.

Volume (Year): 33 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 1-22

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Handle: RePEc:kap:ejlwec:v:33:y:2012:i:1:p:1-22
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  1. Loss, Frederic & Malavolti-Grimal, Estelle & Verge, Thibaud & Berges-Sennou, Fabian, 2008. "European competition policy modernization: From notifications to legal exception," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 77-98, January.
  2. Ulrich Blum & Nicole Steinat & Michael Veltins, 2008. "On the rationale of leniency programs: a game-theoretical analysis," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 25(3), pages 209-229, June.
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  4. Polinsky, A. Mitchell, 2006. "Optimal fines and auditing when wealth is costly to observe," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 323-335, September.
  5. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters, in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Polinsky, Mitchell & Shavell, Steven, 1979. "The Optimal Tradeoff between the Probability and Magnitude of Fines," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(5), pages 880-91, December.
  7. Shavell, Steven, 1993. "The Optimal Structure of Law Enforcement," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(1), pages 255-87, April.
  8. Buccirossi, Paolo & Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2006. "Optimal Fines in the Era of Whistleblowers," CEPR Discussion Papers 5465, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Neven, Damien J & Röller, Lars-Hendrik, 1990. "European Integration and Trade Flows," CEPR Discussion Papers 367, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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