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Empirical Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Competition Policy

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  • Koski, Heli
  • Pajarinen, Mika

Abstract

This study evaluates the usefulness of different modifications of empirical models estimating the so-called Boone indicator for capturing changes in the intensity of competition. We use as “natural experiments” in this evaluation data from three cartel cases: i) international elevators and escalators cartel in various European countries during the years 1995-2004, ii) Finnish raw wood cartel during the years 1997-2004, and iii) Finnish construction cartel 1994-2002. The findings support our argument that particularly when the primary interest is to evaluate the effectiveness of a certain competition policy action, the empirical model should properly take into account a possible structural break in data due to the policy action. Furthermore, our data hint that the methodological choice of prior empirical studies to use data only from one industry at a time may lead into the false conclusions when the Boone indicator is used for evaluating the effectiveness of sector-specific competition policy actions.

Suggested Citation

  • Koski, Heli & Pajarinen, Mika, 2013. "Empirical Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Competition Policy," ETLA Working Papers 15, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
  • Handle: RePEc:rif:wpaper:15
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cosnita-Langlais, Andreea & Tropeano, Jean-Philippe, 2013. "Fight cartels or control mergers? On the optimal allocation of enforcement efforts within competition policy," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 34-40.
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    3. Hüschelrath, Kai & Smuda, Florian, 2013. "Do cartel breakdowns induce mergers? Evidence from EC cartel cases," ZEW Discussion Papers 13-036, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    4. Clifford Winston & Vikram Maheshri & Scott M. Dennis, 2011. "Long-Run Effects of Mergers: The Case of U.S. Western Railroads," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 275-304.
    5. Margaret C. Levenstein & Valerie Y. Suslow, 2011. "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do: Determinants of Cartel Duration," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 455-492.
    6. Philipp Schumacher, 2013. "The EU’s flawed assessment of horizontal aspects in GE/Honeywell: re-visiting the last pillar of the European prohibition decision," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(2), pages 211-240, April.
    7. Jan Boone, 2008. "A New Way to Measure Competition," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(531), pages 1245-1261, August.
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    11. Macallan, Clare & Millard, Stephen & Parker, Miles, 2008. "The cyclicality of mark-ups and profit margins for the United Kingdom: some new evidence," Bank of England working papers 351, Bank of England.
    12. Orley Ashenfelter & Daniel Hosken, 2010. "The Effect of Mergers on Consumer Prices: Evidence from Five Mergers on the Enforcement Margin," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(3), pages 417-466.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    competition; competition policy; Boone indicator; cartels;

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • K21 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Antitrust Law
    • L4 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies
    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices

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