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Is consumer welfare the (only) way forward? A re-appreciation of competition law objectives ante portas in both US and EU

The Goals of Antitrust in the Wake of Crisis

Calls for a re-appreciation of competition policy have never ceased on both sides of the Atlantic. However, the current financial crisis has unsurprisingly provided a particular backdrop against which there has been increased willingness to discuss so-called “fundamental” issues both within as well as across different competition law jurisdictions (for a comprehensive analysis of the impact of financial crises on competition law and policy, in particular with regard to whether a more lenient approach to competition law standards and exceptions to it should be adopted to ensure an adequate handling of possible crisis-related systemic risks, cf. [...]

Behavioural Economics and EU Competition Law: Knocking on Open Doors? The Case of Art. 102 TFEU

The discussion on the merit and feasibility of a possible application of Behavioural Economics in Competition Law and Policy has been fierce, particularly so in the context of US Antitrust Law. The fundamental assumption of Behavioural Economics lies in the recognition that human decision making is vulnerable and subject to biases. So-called neo-classical economic models that have hitherto informed competition law and policy (Chicago School, post-Chicago School, Harvard School) have relied on the existence of a ‘homo economicus’ i.e an ‘[economically] rational’ market participant (be it consumer or firm) who is driven by the goal of constant profit maximisation, appropriates all avai [...]

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