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Program

Updated A.Y. 2022-2023

Lesson 1

  • Introduction to competition law
    • Article 101 TFEU
      • Notion of undertaking
      • Notion of agreement and concerted practice
      • Horizontal agreements (cartels, exchange of information, R&D and other forms of cooperation)
      • Vertical agreements
      • Article 101.3: the legal exception
    • Article 102 TFEU
      • Notion of dominant position
      • Types of abuse
        • Exclusionary
        • Exploitative
      • Merger regulation
        • Notification (ex-ante control)
        • Substantive test
          • Dominance test
          • Substantial impediment of effective competition (or substantial lessening of competition)
        • Effect-based approach to competition law
          • The objective(s) of competition rules
            • Consumer welfare
            • Allocative efficiency
            • Productive efficiency
            • Dynamic efficiency
            • Distributive goals

 

Reading:

  • Treaty on the Function of the European Union – Articles 101 and 102
  • Council Regulation (EC) No 139/2004 of 20 January 2004
  • Motta M. 2004, Competition Policy. Theory and Practice, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, (henceforth “Motta”) pp. 30-38 –( Chapter 1 Section 1.4 The Main feature of European Competition Law)

 

Lesson 2

  • The notion of market power
  • Relationship between market power and efficiency
    • MP and allocative efficiency
    • MP and productive efficiency
    • MP and dynamic efficiency
  • Determinants of market power
    • Number of rivals and concentration
      • Cournot model
      • Measures of concentration
        • The HHI (thresholds)
      • Other determinants of market power
        • Product differentiation
        • Capacity constraints
        • Switching costs
        • Search costs
        • Degree of rivalry
      • Implications for competition law enforcement
        • The “traditional” approach based on market definition
          • Notion of relevant market
          • The SSNIP test (or hypothetical monopolist test)
        • The “modern” approach: theories of harm
          • Counterfactual (a “legal” requirement)
          • Firms’ ability
          • Firms’ incentives
        • Theories of harm (introduction)
          • Collusion
          • Softening competition
          • Foreclosure
        • Efficiency justifications
        • Proving a theory of harm (or an efficiency justification)
          • Standard of proof
          • Factual statements
          • Logical propositions (the role of economic theory)

 

Reading:

  • Notes on Market Power (memo)
  • Notes on Cournot (memo)
  • Motta pp 39-48 (Chapter II from section 2.1 to section 2.3.2.1); 50-52; 55-57; (Chapter II from section 2.1 to section 2.4.1 except for sec. 2.3.2.2, and sec. 2.3.5 s) 101-105 (Chapter 3 from sec 3.1 to 3.2.1.2);115-123 (Chapter 3 from sec 3.3 to 3.3.1.5)

 

Lesson 3

  • Case discussion
    • Vertical agreements and on-line distribution
      • Pierre Fabre
      • Coty
    • The economic theory of collusion
      • Prisoners’ dilemma
      • Repeated games
      • The folk theorem
      • Factors that facilitate collusion
        • Number of rivals
        • Concentration
        • Frequency of interaction
        • Transparency
        • Product homogeneity
        • Firms’ symmetry (market shares, costs)
        • Multi-market contact

 

Reading:

  • Judgment of European Court of Justice of 13 October 2011, in case C‐439/09 Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique SAS
  • Judgment of the European Court of Justice of 6 December 2017 in case C-230/16 Coty Germany GmbH
  • Motta pp. 137-166 (Chapter 4 from sec 4.1 to 4.2.5.2)

 

Lesson 4

  • Cartels
    • Standard of proof and available evidence
    • The use of circumstantial evidence
    • Application of the Bayes theorem to the assessment of circumstantial evidence
    • Plus and super-plus factors
  • Case discussion
    • Wood Pulp
    • Red flags of collusion in procurement

Reading:

  • Kovacic W.E., R.C. Marshall, L.M. Marx and H.L. White, 2011, Plus Factors and Agreement in Antitrust Law, Michigan Law Review
  • Judgment of the European Court of Justice of 31 March 1993 in cases C-89/85, C-104/85, C-114-85, C-116/85, C-117/85, C-125/85, C-126/85, C-127/85,C-128/85, C-129/85 Ahlström Osakeyhtiö et al. v. Commission

 

Lesson 5

  • Softening competition in merger control (unilateral effects)
  • The UPP test
  • Foreclosure
    • Predatory pricing
      • The deep pocket theory
      • Chicago’s critiques
      • Predation with perfect information (sub-game perfection)
        • The chain store paradox
      • Predation with imperfect information
        • Reputation
        • Signaling
      • Essential facility, refusal to deal and margin squeeze
        • Definition of essential facility
        • Firm’s freedom of contracts
        • Constructive refusal and margin squeeze

Reading:

  • Elizabeth M. Bailey, Gregory K. Leonard, G. Steven Olley, and Lawrence Wu, 2010, Merger Screens: Market Share-Based Approaches Versus “UpwardPricingPressure”, the Antitrust Source
  • Motta pp. 411-422 (Chapter 7 from sec 7.1 to 7.2.2.3); 442-449 (Chapter 7 from sec 7.2.4 to 7.2.4.2)
  • Communication from the Commission: Guidance on its enforcement priorities in applying Article 82 of the EC Treaty to abusive exclusionary conduct by dominant undertakings, OJ C 45, 24.2.2009, p. 7–20

 

Lesson 6

  • Case discussion
    • Telia Sonera
    • Tom Tom/Tele Atlas
  • Sanction policy
  • The economic theory of the optimal sanction for individual infringements
    • The Becker’s approach
      • Optimal deterrence
      • Expected sanction
        • Level of the sanction
        • Probability of apprehension
      • Underterrence and overdeterrence
    • The optimal sanction for collective infringements
      • The Stigler’s effect
        • Participation constraint and incentives constraint
        • Leniency programs
      • Action for damages
        • Leniency and damages

 

Reading:

  • Judgment of the European Court of Justice of 17 February 2011 in Case C-52/09 Telia Sonera
  • Decision of the European Commission Tom Tom/Tele Atlas
  • Spagnolo G. 2008, “Leniency and Whistleblowers in Antitrust” in Buccirossi (Ed.) Handbook of Antitrust Economics, Cambridge, The MIT Press