Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Posted by D. Daniel Sokol
Jörg Philipp Terhechte, University of Hamburg explores Excessive Pricing and the Goals of Competition Law - An Enforcement Perspective.
ABSTRACT: The reanimated debate about the regulation or control of exploitative prices by competition authorities can demonstrate, inter alia, that the phenomenon of divergence of substantive standards and even of different goals of national and supranational competition or antitrust laws is often not about real divergence, but increasingly about felt divergence.I totally agree with the idea that the felt divergence between U.S. and European approaches in the field of excessive pricing could be overstated if one starts to broaden the perspective: Even in case a selected competition jurisdiction denies the necessity for a regulation of monopoly profits, as the U.S. does in principle, a deeper analysis of the whole regulatory environment of this jurisdiction will unearth a multitude of sectoral pricing rules which are in many cases not enforced by competition authorities, but by special regulatory agencies instead. Thus, trust in the market or the idea that excessive pricing might be self-correcting4 is restricted from the outset as many important markets all over the world are subject to special (price-) regulation.