The European aviation sector has evolved rapidly in recent years, with low-cost carriers (LCCs) and super connectors flourishing in particular. What effect do these changes have on competition between airports and on the competitive landscape in which they operate, and what do they tell us about a ‘new normal’ for European airports?
Competition policy and regulation are increasingly focusing on fair pricing, and various tests have been developed for assessing when prices are excessive or unfair. Do these tests differ in the case of intellectual property? And how have they been implemented in recent cases concerning copyright and standard essential patents?
Richard Thaler has been awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize for his contributions to behavioural economics. His work on mental accounting, self-control and ‘nudging’ are stand-out achievements. Thaler’s work from the late 1970s to the present day reflects a combination of collaboration and determination, and has affected government and regulatory policy around the world
On 6 September 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) published its widely anticipated judgment on the Intel case. It set aside an earlier General Court ruling that upheld the European Commission’s previous €1.06bn fine on Intel for abuse of dominance in the chip market. The judgment confirms the importance of analysing economic effects in cases involving exclusivity rebates to customers
Proposals by the European Commission to reform the regulatory framework for electronic communications services are under debate in the European Parliament. Meanwhile, national regulators are requesting new regulatory tools to tackle more concentrated ‘oligopolistic’ market structures emerging across Europe. Are their requests justified?
In July 2017, Ofwat, the economic regulator of the water industry in England and Wales, published its eagerly awaited consultation on the methodology for the 2019 price review of the sector (PR19). The key message? Across virtually all areas, things will be tougher for companies than at the previous review
Across the UK, large towns and cities are suffering from deteriorating air quality and chronic levels of traffic congestion, which affect public health as well as the economy. Robert Montgomery, former Managing Director of UK Bus at Stagecoach Group plc, and Matthew Shepherd, Oxera, explore how public transport can provide a solution to these problems, and consider the role of bus partnerships
In July 2017, Oxera and CESS published the results of an experiment to identify the effectiveness of different summary cost metrics (information about total costs) in aiding consumer selection of income drawdown pension products. The study, commissioned by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), shines some light on how consumers respond to cost metrics and how, in this case, simplicity is not necessarily the most effective approach
What are the implications for ports and logistics companies of different scenarios for the future EU–UK customs agreements? Oxera Partner, Andrew Meaney, highlights the urgent need for a policy framework within which industry and civil services can develop solutions that fit both EU- and UK-based importers and exporters of goods
Competition authorities have historically pursued very few cases against excessive pricing. This seems to be changing. In the past 12 months, the rules on abuse of dominance have been invoked to tackle high prices in a range of markets, including pharmaceuticals, musical works, and patents. Together with increased political calls for fairness to consumers, does this mean a revival of excessive pricing in competition law?