Saturday, May 16, 2009

Bates White 6th Annual Antitrust Conference

Posted by D. Daniel Sokol

Bates White will hold its 6th Annual Antitrust Conference on June 1 in Washington DC. 

Session 1: Evaluating evidence on the competitive effects of consummated mergers

  • William E. Kovacic
    FTC Commissioner
  • Joseph Farrell
    Director of the Bureau of Economics, FTC
  • Maribeth Petrizzi
    Litigation II Section Chief, DOJ
  • D. Bruce Hoffman
    Partner, Hunton & Williams
  • T. Scott Thompson
    Partner, Bates White
  • George A. Rozanski (Moderator)
    Partner, Bates White

The session will begin with a brief presentation on methods and potential uses of retrospective analysis, including recent case studies. We will take a practical look at the purposes of and methods for evaluating the effects of consummated mergers:

  • How can retrospective analysis inform merger enforcement policy?
  • What is the appropriate role of retrospective analysis for defending or challenging proposed mergers?
  • What kinds of evidence of competitive effects from consummated mergers is persuasive?
  • What are the potential sources of bias in retrospective studies?
  • When is it appropriate or inappropriate for enforcement agencies to compel production of data and other evidence for purposes of retrospective review and how can the rights and privacy of private parties be preserved?

Session 2: Taking enforcement action against consummated mergers: when is it appropriate and how should it be done?

  • J. Thomas Rosch
    FTC Commissioner
  • Lars-Hendrik Röller
    ESMT President, former Chief Competition Economist, EC
  • Clifford H. Aronson
    Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
  • Robert F. Leibenluft
    Partner, Hogan & Hartson
  • Christine Wilson
    Partner, O’Melveny & Myers
  • Mark J. Botti (Moderator)
    Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld

The agencies have demonstrated a willingness to revisit consummated transactions for purposes of possible enforcement litigation. This raises questions of enforcement thresholds, legal procedures, and post-merger remedies:

  • When, if ever, is a consummated merger safe from legal challenge?
  • What legal, practical, and procedural issues arise for agencies and private parties in the course of such reviews?
  • What conditions warrant the ex-post review of a merger?
  • What are appropriate remedies for consummated mergers found to have had anticompetitive effects?
  • How should retrospective analysis be used in reviewing, challenging and litigating consummated mergers?

Reception, dinner, and keynote address

To cap off the day, Bates White and ESMT Competition Analysis will host a reception and dinner. It will feature opportunities to interact with leading academics and other antitrust attorneys in an informal setting.

FTC Commissioner J. Thomas Rosch will give the keynote address on “Antitrust Law Enforcement: What to do About the Current Economics Cacophony.”

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