Algorithms seem to be on the tips of many antitrust regulators’ tongues these days… • In 2015, William Baer, then principal deputy associate attorney general at the Department of Justice, stated that “[w]e will not tolerate anti-competitive conduct, whether it occurs in a smoke-filled room or over the internet using complex pricing algorithms.” • At […]
In our CPI Talks section, we hear from Antonio Gomes, Head of the Competition Division at the OECD, to get his views on the new challenges competition authorities face in light of the rise of algorithms as well as details about the OECD’s roundtable to be held in June 2017 on Algorithms and Collusion.
By Paul A. Johnson Firms are using algorithms to analyze customer and competitor data in innovative ways. Will this practice soften competition by allowing firms to tacitly collude? Will it allow firms to market to customers in ways that soften competition? This article argues against answering these questions categorically because, depending on the facts of […]
By Maurice E. Stucke & Ariel Ezrachi How competitive is our market economy? Not as much as it ought to be. And the growth of big data threatens to make things even worse. Antitrust regulators already struggle to keep markets competitive. How will they fare in economies increasingly dominated by a few superplatforms?
By Michal S. Gal This short note focuses on three issues. First, it explores the effects of algorithms on the ability of suppliers to coordinate their conduct. Second, it explores the ability of existing technological and regulatory tools to deal effectively with algorithmic-facilitated coordination. The final part briefly explores the promises as well as the […]
By Dylan I. Ballard & Amar S. Naik Sophisticated pricing algorithms and artificial intelligence have attracted the attention of antitrust and competition enforcers. These new technologies may require some new ways of thinking about joint conduct such as price-fixing conspiracies. But to what extent do these innovations really alter traditional antitrust analysis under Section 1 […]
By Salil K. Mehra Speculation has grown that algorithmic prosecutions may become a new focus for antitrust agencies. The rise of the robo-seller promises a tremendous degree of cost savings, as well as potentially robust allocative and dynamic efficiency gains. Overzealous prosecution may chill significant gains to both producers and consumers through better functioning markets. […]
By Ramsi A. Woodcock The primary threat of the rise of the machines is not to competition itself, but to the bargaining power of consumers, given any level of competition in the market. By enabling firms to interact with each consumer on an individual basis, technology will permit firms to tailor price to the highest […]
By Frank Pasquale Digital platforms have exacerbated an old problem in American antitrust law — the tension between the efficiencies that mergers achieve in theory, and the pressure they inevitably create for firms in or adjacent to the industry of the merged firms, to themselves combine in order to better compete. But U.S. antitrust authorities […]
By John M. Newman Innovation yields massive welfare benefits — but it can also pave the way for novel types of anticompetitive harm. Under certain conditions, digital platforms can harness the power of reputation to steer users to favored suppliers. This steering forecloses non-favored suppliers in a related, though distinct, relevant market. Where favored suppliers […]