hero working papers

On the Use of Price-Cost Tests in Loyalty Discounts and Exclusive Dealing Arrangements: Which Implications from Economic Theory?

Number: 584
Year: 2016
Author(s): Chiara Fumagalli and Massimo Motta
Recent cases in the US (Meritor, Eisai) and in the EU (Intel ) have revived the debate on the use of price-cost tests in loyalty discount cases. We draw on existing recent economic theories of exclusion and develop new formal material to argue that economics alone does not justify applying a price-cost test to predation but not to loyalty discounts. Still, the latter contain features (they reference rivals and allow to discriminate across buyers and/or units bought) that have a higher exclusionary potential than the former, and this may well warrant closer scrutiny and more severe treatment from antitrust agencies and courts.

Keywords: Market-Share Discounts, Inefficient Foreclosure, Exclusive Dealing, Antitrust Policy
JEL codes: K21, L41