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Bargaining failures and merger policy

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  • Roberto Burguet

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  • Ramon Caminal

    ()

Abstract

In this paper we study the optimal ex-ante merger policy in a model where merger proposals are the result of strategic bargaining among alternative candidates. We allow for firm asymmetries and, in particular, we emphasize the fact that potential synergies generated by a merger may vary substantially depending on the identity of the participating firms. The model demonstrates that, under some circumstances, relatively inefficient mergers may take place. That is, a particular merger may materialize despite the existence of an alternative merger capable of generating higher social surplus and even higher profits. Such bargaining failures have important implications for the ex-ante optimal merger policy. We show that a more stringent policy than the ex-post optimal reduces the scope of these bargaining failures and raises expected social surplus. We use a bargaining model that is flexible, in the sense that its strategic structure does not place any exogenous restriction on the endogenous likelihood of feasible mergers.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberto Burguet & Ramon Caminal, 2012. "Bargaining failures and merger policy," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 901.12, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  • Handle: RePEc:aub:autbar:901.12
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Inderst, Roman & Wey, Christian, 2004. "The incentives for takeover in oligopoly," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(8-9), pages 1067-1089, November.
    2. Ray, Debraj, 2007. "A Game-Theoretic Perspective on Coalition Formation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199207954.
    3. Horn, Henrik & Persson, Lars, 2001. "Endogenous mergers in concentrated markets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(8), pages 1213-1244, September.
    4. Fridolfsson, Sven-Olof & Stennek, Johan, 2005. "Hold-up of anti-competitive mergers," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(9-10), pages 753-775, December.
    5. Besanko, David & Spulber, Daniel F, 1993. "Contested Mergers and Equilibrium Antitrust Policy," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(1), pages 1-29, April.
    6. Sven-Olof Fridolfsson & Johan Stennek, 2005. "Why Mergers Reduce Profits And Raise Share Prices-A Theory Of Preemptive Mergers," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(5), pages 1083-1104, September.
    7. Barros, Pedro Pita, 1998. "Endogenous mergers and size asymmetry of merger participants," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 113-119, July.
    8. Roberto Burguet & Ramon Caminal, 2010. "Simultaneous Nash Bargaining with Consistent Beliefs," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 854.10, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
    9. Olivier Compte & Philippe Jehiel, 2010. "The Coalitional Nash Bargaining Solution," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(5), pages 1593-1623, September.
    10. Morton I. Kamien & Israel Zang, 1990. "The Limits of Monopolization Through Acquisition," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 465-499.
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    Cited by:

    1. Roberto Burguet & Ramon Caminal, 2016. "Coalitional Bargaining with Consistent Counterfactuals," Working Papers 923, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    endogenous mergers; merger policy; bargaining; synergies;

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices

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