LAW & ECONOMICS : PRIVATE ANTITRUST ENFORCEMENT - GENERAL ECONOMIC FRAMEWORK - DAMAGES ESTIMATION - COMMON EMPIRICAL METHODS - PRACTICAL CHALLENGES

Estimating private antitrust damages

In light of the European Commission’s recent initiatives to bolster private antitrust enforcement, this paper discusses the general economic framework for damages estimation, reviews common empirical methods used by economic experts and highlights some of the practical challenges for estimating private antitrust damages.

1. The European Commission's 2008 White Paper on private damages actions acknowledged that “although there have recently been some signs of improvement in certain Member States, to date in practice victims of EC antitrust infringements only rarely obtain reparation of the harm suffered”. [1] To address the main obstacles to effective compensation, the White Paper considered a series of concrete proposals, including the possibility of providing non-binding guidance to the courts for the quantification of damages in antitrust cases. [2] In order to prepare for the drafting of a paper that would set out this pragmatic guidance, DG Competition commissioned an economic study on damages estimation, [3] and held a workshop in which a number of economic consultants and academics shared their

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Raphael de Coninck, Estimating private antitrust damages, February 2010, Concurrences Review N° 1-2010, Art. N° 30358, pp. 39-43

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