Thursday, August 5, 2010
Posted by D. Daniel Sokol
Nicholas Banasevic and Per Hellström (both DG Competition) discuss When the Chips are Down: Some reflections on the European Commission's Intel Decision.
ABSTRACT: This article provides some reflections on the legal and economic context of the European Commission's 2009 Intel Decision. It first gives a short overview of the debate relating to the interplay between law and economics in the field of unilateral conduct, and then looks at the legal and economic framework that was applied by the Commission in the Intel case. In this context, it discusses a number of issues relating to the factual findings of the Decision as well as the harm that resulted from Intel's conduct. One of the article's key conclusions is that there is no inherent tension between the framework provided by established case law and the fact that, in choosing which cases to pursue, the Commission is entitled to focus its priorities on those types of conduct that are most harmful to consumers. The article also provides a few words of perspective on the fine, an issue that attracts significant attention in its own right.