A PYMNTS Company

Comparative Antitrust Federalism and the Error-Cost Framework

 |  February 11, 2014

Posted by Social Science Research Network

Comparative Antitrust Federalism and the Error-Cost Framework – Florian Wagner-von Papp (University College London Faculty of Laws)

ABSTRACT: The aim of this paper is threefold.

First, it seeks to contribute to a more fine-grained comparison between US antitrust and EU competition law by (selectively) including state antitrust laws as well as laws that pursue objectives different from the antitrust laws but interfere with the aims of the antitrust laws, such as sale-below-cost statutes, car dealer and franchise statutes, or general contract law invalidating resale price maintenance agreements (“non-antitrust laws”).

Secondly, the paper highlights the degree to which such state antitrust laws and non-antitrust laws may interfere with the error-cost framework employed in antitrust law which finely balances Type I and Type II errors.

Thirdly, as a consequence of the first two points, the paper seeks to raise awareness of the importance of clearly defining the relationship between antitrust law on the federal (or EU) level and antitrust laws as well as non-antitrust laws on the (Member) state level. Neither the US approach nor the current EU approach to this relationship are considered satisfactory.