Quotation Affeldt, Pauline, Duso, Tomaso, Szücs, Florian. 2021. 25 Years of European Merger Control. International Journal of Industrial Organization. 76 (10272)




We study the determinants of common European merger policy over its first 25 years, from 1990 to 2014. Using a novel dataset at the level of the relevant antitrust markets and containing all relevant merger cases notified to the European Commission, we evaluate how consistently arguments related to structural market parameters – dominance, rising concentration, barriers to entry, and foreclosure – were applied over time and across different geographic market definitions. On average, linear probability models overestimate the effects of structural indicators. Using non-parametric machine learning techniques, we find that dominance is positively correlated with competitive concerns, especially in markets with a substantial increase in post-merger concentration and in complex mergers. Yet, its importance decreased following the 2004 merger policy reform. Competitive concerns are also correlated with rising concentration, especially if entry barriers and foreclosure are of concern. The impact of these structural indicators in explaining competitive concerns is independent of the geographic market definition and does not change over time.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal International Journal of Industrial Organization
Citation Index SSCI
WU Journalrating 2009 A
WU-Journal-Rating new FIN-A, STRAT-B, VW-B, WH-B
Language English
Title 25 Years of European Merger Control
Volume 76
Number 10272
Year 2021
URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167718721000138
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijindorg.2021.102720
Open Access N


Szücs, Florian (Details)
Affeldt, Pauline (DIW, Germany)
Duso, Tomaso (DIW, Germany)
Department of Economics DP (Details)
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