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Markets In Ip And Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Dec 2011

Markets In Ip And Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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The purpose of market definition in antitrust law is to identify a grouping of sales such that a single firm who controlled them could maintain prices for a significant time at above the competitive level. The conceptions and procedures that go into “market definition” in antitrust can be quite different from those that go into market definition in IP law. When the issue of market definition appears in IP cases, it is mainly as a query about the range over which rivalry occurs. This rivalry may or may not have much to do with a firm’s ability to charge a …


Mergers, Market Dominance And The Lundbeck Case, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Dec 2011

Mergers, Market Dominance And The Lundbeck Case, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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In Lundbeck the Eighth Circuit affirmed a district court’s judgment that a merger involving the only two drugs approved for treating a serious heart condition in infants was lawful. Although the drugs treated the same condition they were not bioequivalents. The Eighth Circuit approved the district court’s conclusion that they had not been shown to be in the same relevant market.

Most mergers that are subject to challenge under the antitrust laws occur in markets that exhibit some degree of product differentiation. The Lundbeck case illustrates some of the problems that can arise when courts apply ideas derived from models …


Tying Arrangements And Lawful Alternatives: Transaction Costs Considerations, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Aug 2011

Tying Arrangements And Lawful Alternatives: Transaction Costs Considerations, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Tying arrangements often increase welfare by promoting product quality and protecting the supplier's goodwill in the tying product. When the tying product works effectively only with ancillary materials or accessories or services of a particular kind or quality, its supplier can assure the requisite quality of the ancillary product only by supplying that product itself. The cost savings defense and the defenses of quality control or good will are the most widely recognized and accepted tying defenses.

One characteristic of manufactured products is differentiation among the offerings of various brands. This in turn produces a need for more specialized provision …


Quasi Exclusive Dealing, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Aug 2011

Quasi Exclusive Dealing, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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A firm's discounting policies over a single product raise concerns analogous to exclusive dealing in two situations. First, the firm may offer conditional discounts structured in such a way as to induce customers to take most of their requirements for a given product from the defendant. In addition, a firm may employ “slotting” fees or similar allowances paid by manufacturers to retailers, with the possible result that rivals have difficulty obtaining access to shelf space. Neither practice is literally "exclusive dealing," because neither involves a condition that the purchaser not deal in the goods of a rival, although they may …


Harsanyi 2.0, Matthew D. Adler Aug 2011

Harsanyi 2.0, Matthew D. Adler

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How should we make interpersonal comparisons of well-being levels and differences? One branch of welfare economics eschews such comparisons, which are seen as impossible or unknowable; normative evaluation is based upon criteria such as Pareto or Kaldor-Hicks efficiency that require no interpersonal comparability. A different branch of welfare economics, for example optimal tax theory, uses “social welfare functions” (SWFs) to compare social states and governmental policies. Interpersonally comparable utility numbers provide the input for SWFs. But this scholarly tradition has never adequately explained the basis for these numbers.

John Harsanyi, in his work on so-called “extended preferences,” advanced a fruitful …


The Marginalist Revolution In Corporate Finance: 1880-1965, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jul 2011

The Marginalist Revolution In Corporate Finance: 1880-1965, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries fundamental changes in economic thought revolutionized the theory of corporate finance, leading to changes in its legal regulation. The changes were massive, and this branch of financial analysis and law became virtually unrecognizable to those who had practiced it earlier. The source of this revision was the marginalist, or neoclassical, revolution in economic thought. The classical theory had seen corporate finance as an historical, relatively self-executing inquiry based on the classical theory of value and administered by common law courts. By contrast, neoclassical value theory was forward looking and as a result …


Tying Noncompetitive Goods, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jul 2011

Tying Noncompetitive Goods, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Many of the classic tying cases involved tied products that were common staples such as button fasteners, canned ink, dry ice, or salt. These products were sold in competitive markets, presumably at prices very close to cost. For most of them the most likely explanations for the tie were quality control or price discrimination, both with competitively benign results in the great majority of situations. When the tied good is sold in a noncompetitive market, however, an additional consumer welfare enhancing result is likely to obtain – namely, the elimination of double marginalization, which occurs when separate sellers of complementary …


A Preface To Neoclassical Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jun 2011

A Preface To Neoclassical Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Most legal historians speak of the period following classical legal thought as “progressive legal thought.” That term creates an unwarranted bias in characterization, however, creating the impression that conservatives clung to an obsolete “classical” ideology, when in fact they were in many ways just as revisionist as the progressives legal thinkers whom they critiqued. The Progressives and New Deal thinkers whom we identify with progressive legal thought were nearly all neoclassical, or marginalist, in their economics, but it is hardly true that all marginalists were progressives. For example, the lawyers and policy makers in the corporate finance battles of the …


When The Government Is The Controlling Shareholder, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock May 2011

When The Government Is The Controlling Shareholder, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock

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As a result of the 2008 bailouts, the United States Government is now the controlling shareholder in AIG, Citigroup, GM, GMAC, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Corporate law provides a complex and comprehensive set of standards of conduct to protect non-controlling shareholders from controlling shareholders who have goals other than maximizing firm value. In this article, we analyze the extent to which these existing corporate law structures of accountability apply when the government is the controlling shareholder, and the extent to which federal “public law” structures substitute for displaced state “private law” norms. We show that the Delaware restrictions on …


A Cost-Benefit Interpretation Of The "Substantially Similar" Hurdle In The Congressional Review Act: Can Osha Ever Utter The E-Word (Ergonomics) Again?, Adam M. Finkel, Jason W. Sullivan Mar 2011

A Cost-Benefit Interpretation Of The "Substantially Similar" Hurdle In The Congressional Review Act: Can Osha Ever Utter The E-Word (Ergonomics) Again?, Adam M. Finkel, Jason W. Sullivan

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The Congressional Review Act permits Congress to veto proposed regulations via a joint resolution, and prohibits an agency from reissuing a rule “in substantially the same form” as the vetoed rule. Some scholars—and officials within the agencies themselves—have understood the “substantially the same” standard to bar an agency from regulating in the same substantive area covered by a vetoed rule. Courts have not yet provided an authoritative interpretation of the standard.

This Article examines a spectrum of possible understandings of the standard, and relates them to the legislative history (of both the Congressional Review Act itself and the congressional veto …


Tying And The Rule Of Reason: Understanding Leverage, Foreclosure, And Price Discrimination, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Mar 2011

Tying And The Rule Of Reason: Understanding Leverage, Foreclosure, And Price Discrimination, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Many tying arrangements are used by firms that do not have substantial market power in either of the two markets linked together by the tie. Their function must be something other than the enlargement or perpetuation of power. A few ties do involve fairly explicit exercises of market power, but they need not be used for a different purpose than the ties imposed by more competitive firms. This paper considers firms’ use of ties to exploit whatever power they already have over the tying product. The "leverage" theory sees ties as exploiting customers as a group via higher prices, whether …


A Primer On Antitrust Damages, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Mar 2011

A Primer On Antitrust Damages, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This paper considers the theory of antitrust damages and then discusses some simple models for proving them. Antitrust damages theory begins with the premise that many practices alleged to violate the antitrust laws cause no consumer harm. Others are inefficient and have few socially redeeming virtues. Still others may simultaneously increase both the efficiency of the participants and their market power. A perfectly designed antitrust policy would exonerate the first set of practices, condemn the second set, and condemn the third set only when the social cost of the restraint exceeds its social value or they produce net harm to …


The Shifting Terrain Of Risk And Uncertainty On The Liability Insurance Field, Tom Baker Feb 2011

The Shifting Terrain Of Risk And Uncertainty On The Liability Insurance Field, Tom Baker

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Recent sociological and historical work suggests that insurance risks often are not reliably calculable, except in hindsight. Insurance is “an uncertain business,” characterized by competition for premiums that pushes insurers into the unknown. This essay takes some preliminary steps that extend this insight into the liability insurance field. The essay first provides a simple quantitative comparison of U.S. property and liability insurance premiums over the last sixty years, setting the stage to make three points: (1) liability insurance premiums have grown at a similar rate as property insurance premiums and GDP over this period, providing yet another piece of evidence …


Quantification Of Harm In Private Antitrust Actions In The United States, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Feb 2011

Quantification Of Harm In Private Antitrust Actions In The United States, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This paper discusses the theory and experience of United States courts concerning the quantification of harm in antitrust cases. This treatment pertains to both the social cost of antitrust violations, and to the private damage mechanisms that United States antitrust law has developed. It is submitted for the Roundtable on the Quantification of Harm to Competition by National Courts and Competition Agencies, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Feb., 2011.

In a typical year more than 90% of antitrust complaints filed in the United States are by private plaintiffs rather than the federal government. Further, when the individual states …


Health Insurance, Risk, And Responsibility After The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act, Tom Baker Feb 2011

Health Insurance, Risk, And Responsibility After The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act, Tom Baker

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This essay explores the new social contract of healthcare solidarity through private ownership, markets, choice, and individual responsibility embodied in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. This essay first explains the four main health care risk distribution institutions affected by the Act – Medicare, Medicaid, the individual and small employer market, and the large group market – with an emphasis on how the Act changes those institutions and how they are financed. The essay then describes the “fair share” approach to health care financing embodied in the Act. This approach largely rejects the actuarial fairness vision of what constitutes …


The Firm As Cartel Manager, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Christopher R. Leslie Jan 2011

The Firm As Cartel Manager, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Christopher R. Leslie

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Antitrust law is the primary legal obstacle to price fixing, which is condemned by Section 1 of the Sherman Act. Firms that engage in price fixing may try to reduce their probability of antitrust liability in a number of ways. First, members of a price-fixing conspiracy go to great lengths to conceal their illegal activities from antitrust enforcers. Second, because Section 1 condemns only concerted action, firms may structure their relationship to appear to be the action of a single entity that is beyond the reach of Section One.

In its American Needle decision the Supreme Court held that the …


The Political Economy Of Fraud On The Market, William W. Bratton, Michael L. Wachter Jan 2011

The Political Economy Of Fraud On The Market, William W. Bratton, Michael L. Wachter

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No abstract provided.


Promoting The Buildout Of New Networks Vs. Compelling Access To The Monopoly Loop: A Clash Of Regulatory Paradigms, Christopher S. Yoo Jan 2011

Promoting The Buildout Of New Networks Vs. Compelling Access To The Monopoly Loop: A Clash Of Regulatory Paradigms, Christopher S. Yoo

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No abstract provided.


Government Governance And The Need To Reconcile Government Regulation With Board Fiduciary Duties, Lisa Fairfax Jan 2011

Government Governance And The Need To Reconcile Government Regulation With Board Fiduciary Duties, Lisa Fairfax

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Corporate governance scandals inevitably raise concerns about the extent to which corporate directors failed in their responsibility to monitor the corporation and its managers, especially in terms of the latter's’ misdeeds. Corporate governance reforms strive to shore up directors' roles by seeking to ensure that boards have sufficient incentives to engage in effective oversight and to hold the boards more accountable. The current financial crisis has ushered in an era of significant government reform of the financial system and involvement in corporate governance matters. Such involvement has increased board of directors' responsibilities but has not reconciled those responsibilities with board …


Breaching The Mortgage Contract: The Behavioral Economics Of Strategic Default, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan Jan 2011

Breaching The Mortgage Contract: The Behavioral Economics Of Strategic Default, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan

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Underwater homeowners face a quandary: Should they make their monthly payments as promised or walk away and save money? Traditional economic analysis predicts that homeowners will strategically default (voluntarily enter foreclosure) when it is cheaper to do so than to keep paying down the mortgage debt. But this prediction ignores the moral calculus of default, which is arguably much less straightforward. On the one hand, most people have moral qualms about breaching their contracts, even when the financial incentives are clear. On the other hand, the nature of the lender-borrower relationship is changing and mortgage lenders are increasingly perceived as …


The Insignificance Of Proxy Access, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock Jan 2011

The Insignificance Of Proxy Access, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock

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No abstract provided.


At The Conjunction Of Love And Money: Comment On Julie A. Nelson, Does Profit-Seeking Rule Out Love? Evidence (Or Not) From Economics And Law, William W. Bratton Jan 2011

At The Conjunction Of Love And Money: Comment On Julie A. Nelson, Does Profit-Seeking Rule Out Love? Evidence (Or Not) From Economics And Law, William W. Bratton

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No abstract provided.


Reconsidering International Tax Neutrality, Michael S. Knoll Jan 2011

Reconsidering International Tax Neutrality, Michael S. Knoll

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For decades, U.S. international tax policy has shifted back and forth between territorial-source-exemption taxation and worldwide-residence-credit taxation. The former is generally associated with capital import neutrality (CIN) and the latter with capital export neutrality (CEN). One reason why national tax policy has shifted back and forth between those benchmarks is because it is widely accepted that a tax system cannot simultaneously satisfy both CEN and CIN unless tax rates on capital are harmonized across jurisdictions. In this essay, I argue that the international tax literature contains two different and conflicting definitions for CIN. Under one definition, which goes back at …


Coase, Institutionalism, And The Origins Of Law And Economics, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Coase, Institutionalism, And The Origins Of Law And Economics, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Ronald Coase merged two traditions in economics, marginalism and institutionalism. Neoclassical economics in the 1930s was characterized by an abstract conception of marginalism and frictionless resource movement. Marginal analysis did not seek to uncover the source of individual human preference or value, but accepted preference as given. It treated the business firm in the same way, focusing on how firms make market choices, but saying little about their internal workings.

“Institutionalism” historically refers to a group of economists who wrote mainly in the 1920s and 1930s. Their place in economic theory is outside the mainstream, but they have found new …


A New Deal In A World Of Old Ones, Theodore Ruger Jan 2011

A New Deal In A World Of Old Ones, Theodore Ruger

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No abstract provided.


Introduction To Creation Without Restraint: Promoting Liberty And Rivalry In Innovation, Christina Bohannan, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Introduction To Creation Without Restraint: Promoting Liberty And Rivalry In Innovation, Christina Bohannan, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This document contains the table of contents, introduction, and a brief description of Christina Bohannan & Herbert Hovenkamp, Creation without Restraint: Promoting Liberty and Rivalry in Innovation (Oxford 2011).

Promoting rivalry in innovation requires a fusion of legal policies drawn from patent, copyright, and antitrust law, as well as economics and other disciplines. Creation Without Restraint looks first at the relationship between markets and innovation, noting that innovation occurs most in moderately competitive markets and that small actors are more likely to be truly creative innovators. Then we examine the problem of connected and complementary relationships, a dominant feature of …