During my tenure as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for International Enforcement in the Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice, in a speech I delivered in London, in May 2002, I identified the regulation of single-firm conduct as the area of greatest divergence between U.S. and European competition policy. In the United States, led by the insights of the so-called Chicago School of economics, the courts have moved progressively toward an approach to single-firm conduct that has substantially narrowed the range of potential antitrust intervention. In Europe, by contrast, the courts appear to continue to take a more regulatory approach to the conduct of allegedly dominant firms especially in such areas as above-cost price discounting and access to what are sometimes called "essential facilities." I speculated (admittedly with little empirical support) that this difference in approach might be contributing to the slower rate of economic growth in Europe, and I called, therefore, for a transatlantic dialogue over the relative merits of our differing approaches.


Antitrust and Trade Regulation

Date of this Version

July 2005