Economic Analysis in Antitrust: The Case of Brazil
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We review the Brazilian experience on the use of economic analysis in antitrust practice. Economic theory provides a sound foundation for working with Constitutional principles that back Antitrust law. This allows economic theory and analysis to play a central role in interpreting evidence in cases. Merger analysis extensively uses economic arguments for rulings in Brazil, with practice following closely international guidelines and standards. Economic analysis is also widely used in abuse of dominance/ monopolization (conduct) cases, but its scope is often limited by per se interpretations. We argue that this state of affairs is influenced by a perception of few robust economic results on agreements or collective dominance/monopolization; more explicit law statements on conduct than in merger analysis; higher risk of judicial challenge of decisions (compared to mergers) and relatively limited expertise. Particularly in a developing country, echoing previous authors, economic analysis can achieve a more prominent role if it is able to provide guidelines for investigation and differentiation between pro-competitive and anti-competitive effects of business practices.
KeywordsEconomic analysis Brazil Mergers Monopolization
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