Counterfactual Tests in Competition Law

Competition Law Journal, No. 4, November 2010

15 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2010

See all articles by Cento Veljanovski

Cento Veljanovski

Case Associates; Institute of Economic Affairs

Date Written: November 24, 2010


This article looks at the growing use of the counterfactual approach in European and UK competition laws. The term counterfactual has not been a feature of European competition law, with the exception of merger control, to date. However, with the move to an effects-based approach, counterfactuals are being used occasionally, hesitantly and with mixed results. The article examines the use of counterfactuals in 'behavioural' competition law investigations based on a review of UK and EC competition guidelines, decisions, and several leading UK cases.

Keywords: counterfactual, antitrust, competition law, effects-based approach, causation, dominance

JEL Classification: D4, K0, L1, L4

Suggested Citation

Veljanovski, Cento, Counterfactual Tests in Competition Law (November 24, 2010). Competition Law Journal, No. 4, November 2010, Available at SSRN: or

Cento Veljanovski (Contact Author)

Case Associates ( email )

96 Kensington High Street
London, W8 4SG
United Kingdom
+44 (0)20 73764418 (Phone)


Institute of Economic Affairs

2 Lord North Street, Westminster
London, SW1P 3LB
United Kingdom

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics