Staples-Office Depot and Up-Sp: An Antitrust Tale of Two Proposed Mergers

29 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2008

See all articles by Lawrence J. White

Lawrence J. White

New York University (NYU) - Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics

Date Written: March 2002

Abstract

This paper examines two proposed mergers of the 1990s: the Staples proposal to mergewith Office Depot, and the Union Pacific railroad's proposal to merge with the Southern Pacific. Though the two mergers appeared to be quite different on the surface, closer analysis indicates thatthey were surprisingly similar: both involved a merger of two of the three firms in their respective markets; and both involved significant issues of market delineation. However, the two proposals received quite disparate treatment by different antitrust regimes: The former was blocked by theFTC, while the latter was approved by the STB. The former was a sensible decision; the latter had disastrous consequences for freight shipments in the American southwest in the late 1990s.

Keywords: mergers, antitrust, office super stores, railroads

Suggested Citation

White, Lawrence J., Staples-Office Depot and Up-Sp: An Antitrust Tale of Two Proposed Mergers (March 2002). NYU Working Paper No. EC-02-12. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1292658

Lawrence J. White (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics ( email )

44 West 4th Street
Suite 9-160
New York, NY NY 10012
United States

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