Financial crisis

Anticompetitive practices

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission publishes report on the prices, costs and profits of unleaded petrol
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission
ACCC Petrol Report shows prices still high despite global weakness* The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released its 2013 report on the prices, costs and profits of unleaded petrol in Australia. “The report shows that international prices and domestic fuel taxes are the key (...)

The EU Competition Commissioner announces fines in bathroom fittings cartel tackling the issue of fine discounts on bankruptcy grounds (Artweger, Cisal)
University of East Anglia - CCP (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. Dodgy Plumbing: Why Europe’s Willingness to Grant Bankruptcy Discounts is Bad for Cartel Enforcement* A speech by the European Commissioner for Competition may signal a greater willingness to grant discounts in cartel fines on the (...)

The UK OFT accepts fine settlement for price fixing cartel in the bank industry (Royal Bank of Scotland)
University of East Anglia - CCP (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. Reckless Bank Saved by the Taxpayer Will Now Pay Cartel Fine* British bank, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), has agreed to pay a fine of £28.6 million for price fixing. RBS employees shared confidential pricing information concerning (...)

The EU Commission estimates costs for more effective Greek competition enforcement
University of East Anglia - CCP (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. Greece Needs to Tackle Cartels – But Can It?* An EU task force sent to Athens in January have suggested that removing obstacles to competition – estimated to cost Greece around 1% of GDP (€2.5bn a year) – would help to restore its (...)

State Aids

The EU Commission authorises aid in order to enable the concession holders to finalize two motorway projects that have encountered financial difficulties
College of Europe (Bruges)
Article published on Lexxion State Aid Blog Public Funding of Projects that Encounter Financial Problems* Main points Aid that is granted after the start of a project lacks incentive effect and is, therefore, incompatible with the internal market. However, aid may be justified when a project (...)

The EU General Court partly annuls EU Commission decision on restructuring aid granted to a bank on account of the financial crisis (ING)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 March 2012, the General Court (“GC”) has partly upheld ING’s appeal against a Commission decision of 2009 regarding various forms of aid granted by the Dutch State to the banking group ING in the context of the latter’s restructuring plan during the financial crisis. The ING group had (...)

The European Commission temporarily approves a €200 M asset guarantee granted by the Austrian government to a bank (Hypo Alpe Adria)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 19 July 2011 the Commission temporarily Approved a €200 million asset guarantee, which Austria granted to the bank at the end of 2010. Given the specific characteristics of the guarantee, which shelters the bank from losses (...)

The European Commission approves restructuring aid granted to a German banking group (Hypo Real estate)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 18 July 2011 the Commission approved restructuring aid consisting of capital injections of €10 billion, an asset relief measure with an aid element of about €20 billion, as well as liquidity guarantees amounting to €145 billion (...)

The European Commission temporarily approves recapitalisations in the financial sector granted by the Irish authorities (Allied Irish Banks/Educational Building Society, Irish Life & Permanent group Holdings)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 15 July 2011 the Commission temporarily Approved a recapitalisation worth up to €13.1 billion of an entity resulting from the merger of Allied Irish Banks and Educational Building Society (AIB/EBS), as well as a (...)

The European Commission temporarily approves the recapitalisation of a bank by the Irish authorities of up to €5.35 billion, after a first €3.5 billion restructuring plan was approved (Bank of Ireland)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 11 July 2011, the Commission temporarily approved the recapitalisation of the Bank of Ireland (BoI) by the Irish authorities of up to €5.35 billion, after a first €3.5 billion restructuring plan was approved in July 2010. This (...)

The European Commission clears a joint restructuring plan for two Irish banks (Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide Building Society)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 29 June 2011, the Commission cleared a joint plan for Anglo Irish Bank (Anglo) and Irish Nationwide Building Society (INBS) whereby they will be merged and resolved over a period of 10 years. The two Irish financial (...)

The European Commission approves the joint restructuring of two Irish banks (Anglo Irish Bank/Irish Nationwide Building Society)
De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"The Resolution of Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide Building Society"* 1. Introduction Of the banks that have received State aid during the financial crisis, few have received as much aid relative to their risk‑weighted assets as Anglo Irish Bank (Anglo) and Irish Nationwide Building (...)

The European Commission grants temporary approval to Danish support for the liquidation of a bank which was declared bankrupt (Amagerbanken)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 6 June 2011 the Commission granted temporary Approval to Danish support for the liquidation of Amagerbanken, which was declared bankrupt in February 2011. The aid is limited to what is necessary to facilitate an orderly (...)

The European Commission clears Danish support for the liquidation of a bank, as it provides for an orderly wind‑up of the bank and foresees sufficient safeguards to limit distortion of competition (Eik Bank)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 6 June 2011 the Commission cleared Danish support for the liquidation of Eik Bank, as it provides for an orderly wind‑up of the bank and foresees sufficient safeguards to limit distortion of competition. The bank, until 2010 (...)

The European Commission approves the restructuring plan of the agricultural bank of Greece (ATE)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 May and 31  August 2011"* On 23 May 2011 the Commission approved the restructuring plan of the Agricultural Bank of Greece (ATE), judging it apt to restore the bank’s long‑term viability whilst ensuring it shares the burden of its restructuring and (...)

The European Commission approves a support package and restructuring plan for a Dutch financial institution subject to certain conditions (ABN AMRO Group)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2011* On 5 February, the Commission approved a support package and restructuring plan for the ABN AMRO Group, subject to certain conditions. The restructuring package has been under implementation since October 2008, when the Dutch (...)

The European Commission extends the State aid temporary framework to support measures in favour of banks in the context of the financial crisis
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Prolongation of the State aid temporary framework* 1. Introduction - The State aid temporary framework The Commission adopted the State aid temporary framework in December 2008 as a response to the global financial crisis. At that time, and in view of the serious risk of a credit crunch, it (...)

The European Commission authorizes, under the temporary framework, a Slovenian measure to provide insurance cover via the State-owned agency to exporters who are unable to obtain cover from the private market (SID Banka)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010"* The Commission also authorised a Slovenian measure to provide insurance cover via the State-owned agency, SID Banka, to exporters who are unable to obtain cover from the private market as a result of the current financial (...)

The European Commission approves the establishment of a national agency constituting an impaired asset relief scheme for financial institutions in Ireland (National Asset Management Agency)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010"* On 26 February 2010, the Commission approved the establishment of the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA), an impaired asset relief scheme for financial institutions in Ireland. The purpose of NAMA is to restore stability (...)

The European Commission authorizes Danish scheme providing export loans to Danish exporters and/or their clients experiencing difficulties in accessing funding
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010"* The Commission has authorised a Danish scheme providing export loans to Danish exporters and/or their clients who are experiencing difficulties in accessing funding in the current financial crisis. The Commission found the (...)

The European Commission approves aid given by the UK authorities to facilitate restructuring of UK financial services company (Dunfermline Building Society)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010"* On 25 January 2010, the Commission approves aid given by the UK authorities to facilitate restructuring of the Dunfermline Building Society of the United Kingdom. The restructuring consisted of the immediate split-up of (...)

The European Commission approves the measures taken by the UK Government for the liquidation of UK specialist mortgages and savings products company (Bradford & Bingley)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010"* On 25 January 2010 the Commission approved the measures taken by the UK Government for the liquidation of Bradford & Bingley. Bradford and Bingley provided specialist mortgages and savings products. It operated 197 (...)

The European Commission adopts a communication amending the temporary framework for State aid measures to support access to finance in the current financial and economic crisis
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 September and 31 December 2009"* On 8 December 2009 a technical amendment to the Temporary Framework was adopted to open up easier access to finance and encourage longterm investment, especially in Member States with low labour costs. Member States will (...)

The European Commission endorses UK restructuring plan in favor of a UK bank (Lloyds Banking Group)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 September and 31 December 2009"* Lloyds Banking Group is the entity resulting from the acquisition of HBOS by Lloyds TSB in January 2009. In 2008, HBOS was on the brink of bankruptcy as a result of risky lending and heavy dependence on wholesale funding. (...)

The European Commission publishes a handbook on State aid rules to SMEs
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 30 January 2009, the Commission published a handbook which gives a concise overview of EC State aid legislation applicable to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME). The handbook first clarifies the definition of a SME and thereafter describes the relevant instruments under which aid can (...)

The European Commission adopts a temporary framework for State aid measures providing member States with additional possibilities to tackle the effects of the financial crisis
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 17 December 2008, the Commission adopted a temporary Framework for State aid measures to support access to finance in the current financial and economic crisis. The Framework forms part of the European Economic Recovery Plan announced on 26th November and it introduces a number of temporary (...)

Procedures

The Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation publishes a new competition bill to strengthen competition law enforcement ("The Competition (Amendment) Bill 2011")
University of East Anglia - CCP (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. Will IMF Requirement that Ireland Strengthen Competition Law Sanctions Actually Make a Difference?* The Republic of Ireland is facing the most serious economic crisis in its history. In order to deal with its sovereign debt crisis, it (...)

The Memorandum of Understanding on specific economic and competition policy conditionality for granting financial assistance: Portugese point of view
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
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Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
The views expressed here are the authors’ alone. 1. Introduction On May 3rd 2011 the Portuguese Government reached an agreement with the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund regarding a Memorandum of Understanding on specific economic policy (...)

The Memorandum of Understanding on specific economic and competition policy conditionality for granting financial assistance: Irish point of view
The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission of Ireland
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The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission of Ireland
1. Introduction Ireland has endured a dramatic reversal of fortune since the onset of the financial crisis. Up until a few years ago the fastest growing economy in Europe, Ireland finds itself excluded from the bond market and wholly dependent on external assistance from the IMF and its EU (...)

The European Commission publishes 2009 annual report on competition policy
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 3 June 2010, the European Commission published its 2009 annual report on competition policy. This yearly report gives an overview of the main developments in EU competition policy and major enforcement actions. The 2009 report also dedicates a chapter to considering how the tools of (...)

The Memorandum of Understanding on specific economic and competition policy conditionality for granting financial assistance: Greek point of view
Potamitis Vekris
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Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
The views expressed here are the authors’ alone. 1. Introduction Faced with the current economic crisis, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) has a crucial role to play in safeguarding the conditions of effective competition and in fostering a genuine “competition culture” in Greece. Free (...)

The Greek, Irish and Portuguese governments implement competition-related commitments enshrined in Memoranda of Understanding aimed at supporting the economic recovery
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
Much has been discussed about the impact of the economic crisis on the enforcement of competition law and the implementation of structural reforms in key economic sectors. The recent experience with Greece, Ireland and Portugal regarding the economic adjustment programs concluded with the (...)

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