Exchange of Information: Current Issues

Law & Economics workshop organized by Concurrences in partnership with Allen & Overy and Compass Lexecon.


Justin Coombs (Compass Lexecon)

Justin Coombs opened the seminar with a presentation outlining the basic economic theory underlying the antitrust analysis of information exchange and providing an economist’s perspective on the recent UK cement case. For markets to operate optimally, maximising consumer welfare, firms and consumers must, inter alia, be well-informed so that they may make wellconsidered choices; competition does not require “uncertainty”. In general, more information is good for competition and consumers. However, in some circumstances, too much information can instead facilitate coordination (for example, by allowing a coordinated outcome to be reached or by allowing fi rms to monitor compliance with such an outcome once established). The challenge is to distinguish between situations in which information disclosure (private or public) increases competition as opposed to leading to coordinated outcomes.

Photos © Emilie Gomez

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  • BEUC (Brussels)
  • European Commission (Brussels)
  • Allen & Overy (Amsterdam)
  • Compass Lexecon (London)