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Cross-Border Price Effects of Mergers and Acquisitions -- A Quantitative Framework for Competition Policy

  • Breinlich, Holger
  • Nocke, Volker
  • Schutz, Nicolas

Decisions of national competition authorities have important effects on other jurisdictions. We provide a framework to quantify the domestic and cross-border effects of mergers, and to draw conclusions for the coordination of national merger policies. We develop a two-country model with many sectors. In each sector, producers vary in terms of their marginal costs, and are engaged in Cournot competition. We allow for profitable mergers to take place subject to the non-violation of a given national competition policy. Because of trade costs and perceived differences in qualities between domestic and foreign products, mergers may have different consumer surplus effects in the home and the foreign country. We calibrate the model using data for the year 2002 for 167 manufacturing sectors in the U.S. and Canada. We choose parameters to match relevant moments in the data, including industry sales, concentration ratios and trade flows. We find that in the majority of industries a merger approval policy based on domestic consumer surplus is too restrictive from the viewpoint of the neighboring country. We also show that adopting a supra-national policy that approves a merger if and only if it increases the sum of consumer surplus in the two countries would lead to significant gains for U.S. consumers but hurt consumers in Canada. These results highlight the difficulties in coordinating national competition policies in a way acceptable to all participating countries.

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File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/79837/1/VfS_2013_pid_129.pdf
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Paper provided by Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association in its series Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order with number 79837.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79837
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.socialpolitik.org/
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  1. Farrell, Joseph & Shapiro, Carl, 1988. "Horizontal Mergers: An Equilibrium Analysis," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt0tp305nx, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  2. Horn, Henrik & Levinsohn, James, 2001. "Merger Policies and Trade Liberalisation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(470), pages 244-76, April.
  3. Salant, Stephen W & Switzer, Sheldon & Reynolds, Robert J, 1983. "Losses from Horizontal Merger: The Effects of an Exogenous Change in Industry Structure on Cournot-Nash Equilibrium," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(2), pages 185-99, May.
  4. Breinlich, Holger, 2008. "Trade liberalization and industrial restructuring through mergers and acquisitions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 254-266, December.
  5. J. Peter Neary, 2007. "Cross-Border Mergers as Instruments of Comparative Advantage," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(4), pages 1229-1257.
  6. di Giovanni, Julian, 2005. "What drives capital flows? The case of cross-border M&A activity and financial deepening," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 127-149, January.
  7. Martin Pesendorfer, 2005. "Mergers Under Entry," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(3), pages 661-679, Autumn.
  8. Jehiel, Philippe & Moldovanu, Benny, 1995. "Negative Externalities May Cause Delay in Negotiation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(6), pages 1321-35, November.
  9. Raymond Deneckere & Carl Davidson, 1985. "Incentives to Form Coalitions with Bertrand Competition," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(4), pages 473-486, Winter.
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