Resource title

Cartel Damages and Cost Asymmetries

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Resource description

During the last ten years there has been a rigorous debate on how to improveanti-cartel enforcement in Europe. Introducing private enforcementssystems, like in the US, was early in the process regarded as one of themost important steps for significant improvements. In contrast to publicenforcement, private enforcement relies on adequate compensation to customersharmed by a cartel. But cartel damages are hard to calculate andthe European Commission has therefore presented a draft guideline on howto quantify harm to assist courts and claimants.The focus in the guidance is on price effects, but cartels are also likely to causeother types of damage, such as efficiency effects. For example, a Swedishcommittee investigating cartels in the 1950’s stated that”A monopolist or a cartel can charge too high prices in relation to its costs. Acartel determines prices after the least efficient firm in the cartel, and henceprotects it” (SOU 1951:27).This statement reflects an early awareness that pricing and efficiency effectsfrom cartels are deeply related, and jointly determines the harm for consumers.This thesis aims at re-joining the discussion of cartel prices andefficiencies for the purpose of determining cartel damages. It will focus onthe issue outlined above, i.e. cartel behaviour and the harm caused by cartelswhen a cartel consists of members that are not symmetric in costs. Costasymmetries can be both exogenous and endogenous to cartel formation, butrather than discussing why asymmetries arise, I will in the four chapters focuson the effect the asymmetries have on cartel prices and hence consumerharm.

Resource author

Petter Berg

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Resource publish date

Resource language

eng

Resource content type

application/pdf

Resource resource URL

http://hdl.handle.net/10398/8407

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