Strategic Response to Merger Control: Evidence around National and Supranational Thresholds

32 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2021

See all articles by Michael Weichselbaumer

Michael Weichselbaumer

Vienna University of Economics and Business

Date Written: April 21, 2021

Abstract

Size thresholds exist for overall, national merger review and for assignment to national versus supranational responsibility. I analyse competition effects close to these review thresholds. Firms could strategically pursue competition-reducing mergers before they come under any regulatory oversight. The results, though, point out another type of strategic behaviour by firms: 3-4 years after merger finalisation, 20 percent fewer procurement auctions receive more than one bid after mergers reviewed by national authorities, both in comparison to non-reviewed and to supranationally reviewed cases. Finding lower competition with a 3-4 year lag could be a result of the end of the forecast horizon of the competition authority. An interpretation applying to the positive competition effect for the supranationally regulated cases is that supranational regulation is helpful to avoid political interference.

Keywords: Mergers, Threshold, Competition, Auctions, Regulation

JEL Classification: K21, D44, G34, L22, L40

Suggested Citation

Weichselbaumer, Michael, Strategic Response to Merger Control: Evidence around National and Supranational Thresholds (April 21, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3831141 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3831141

Michael Weichselbaumer (Contact Author)

Vienna University of Economics and Business ( email )

Welthandelsplatz 1
Vienna, Wien 1020
Austria

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