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Antitrust in the Not-For-Profit Sector

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  • Tomas J. Philipson
  • Richard A. Posner

Abstract

Despite the conceptual differences between for-profit and non-profit firms stressed in conventional economic analyses of the non-profit sector, U.S. antitrust law generally does not distinguish between these two organizational forms. This paper argues that the same incentives to restrain trade exist in the non-profit sector as in the for-profit sector. Altruistic firms benefit from exploiting market power, just as non-altruistic ones do, even when they would price below cost without regard to competition. Therefore, promoting competition is socially valuable regardless of the particular objectives of producers, and the fact that antitrust law does not distinguish between the two sectors is efficient.

Suggested Citation

  • Tomas J. Philipson & Richard A. Posner, 2006. "Antitrust in the Not-For-Profit Sector," NBER Working Papers 12132, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12132
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    JEL classification:

    • K2 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law

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