Comcast/NBCU: The FCC Provides a Roadmap for Vertical Merger Analysis
7 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2011 Last revised: 5 Jan 2014
Date Written: February 5, 2011
The FCC’s analysis of the Comcast-NBCU transaction fills a gap in the contemporary treatment of vertical mergers by providing a roadmap for courts and litigants addressing the possibility of anticompetitive exclusion. The FCC identified the factors any judicial or administrative tribunal would likely consider today in analyzing whether a vertical merger would lead to anticompetitive input or customer foreclosure, and a range of economic methods potentially relevant to applying that template to the facts of a transaction. Notwithstanding the difference between administrative adjudication under a public interest standard and judicial decision-making under the Clayton Act, the legal framework and economic studies the Commission employed promise to influence the approach that antitrust tribunals will now take in evaluating vertical mergers.
Keywords: vertical mergers, exclusion, foreclosure
JEL Classification: K21, K23, L40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation