Recidivism in EU Antitrust Enforcement: A Legal and Economic Analysis

24 Pages Posted: 9 Nov 2011 Last revised: 27 Nov 2013

Wouter P. J. Wils

King's College London; European Commission

Date Written: October 31, 2011

Abstract

Recidivism has in the last few years attracted much attention and controversy in the context of EU antitrust enforcement. The treatment of recidivism by the European Commission and the EU Courts has often been criticized, and the observed incidence of recidivism has led to some questioning of the overall effectiveness of EU antitrust enforcement. This paper first clarifies the concept of recidivism and then analyses the treatment of recidivism as an aggravating circumstance in setting the amount of fines, the interplay between recidivism and leniency, and the difficulty of drawing conclusions as to the overall effectiveness of EU antitrust enforcement from the observed incidence of recidivism.

Keywords: EU, competition law, antitrust enforcement, fines, recidivism, leniency

JEL Classification: K14, K21, K40, K42, L40

Suggested Citation

Wils, Wouter P. J., Recidivism in EU Antitrust Enforcement: A Legal and Economic Analysis (October 31, 2011). World Competition: Law and Economics Review, Vol. 35, No. 1, March 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1957088

Wouter P. J. Wils (Contact Author)

King's College London

Somerset House East Wing
Strand
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

European Commission ( email )

Brussels, B-1049
Belgium

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