OECD Journal: Competition Law and Policy

  • Discontinued

This journal draws on the best of the recent work done for and by the OECD Committee on Competition Law and Policy. Its articles provide insight into the thinking a competition law enforcers, and focus on the practical application of competition law and policy. Here’s what Robert Pitofsky, Chairman of the US Federal Trade Commission said about this new journal when it was launched: “Global competition is the wave of the future, and comparative analysis of the laws and practices of various members of the worldwide community of nations is a necessary corollary. This new OECD Journal of Competition Law and Policy, compiled from OECD Round Table discussions, summaries of recent developments, and articles on topics of special interest, will introduce regulators, practitioners, and scholars to different regulatory approaches around the world and will allow us to consider in a more informed way the strengths and weaknesses of our own systems.”

Now published as part of the OECD Journal package.

English French

Competition in Bidding Markets

The OECD Competition Committee debated competition in bidding markets in October 2006. Competition authorities become interested in auctions by a number of routes. In competition advocacy, they may advise other parts of government on how to design auctions in order to improve their efficiency—the degree of competition. They may evaluate mergers and agreements between firms that operate in auction markets. And they may be concerned with collusion and abuse of a dominant position in auctions. Because their formal rules reduce “noise” and make communication among rivals easier, auctions can promote collusion, compared with ordinary “posted-price” markets. But an auction can be designed to reduce collusion or concerted practices or to promote participation. Thus, the design of an auction can be the object of lobbying pressure. Auctioneers can also behave strategically, choosing auction formats or practices that favour competition. Two fundamental prescriptions for effective auction design follow from the theoretical literature: Induce bidders to truthfully reveal their valuations by making what they pay not depend entirely on what they bid, and maximize the information available to each participant before he bids.


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