A tale of two cities: the rise and fall of listings

The decline in European public equity markets has sparked concern from policymakers about how to revive listings. Behind this overall declining trend, there is a notable variation between financial centres. The contrasting experiences of Sweden and the UK highlight how more flexibility in some aspects of the listing rules and corporate governance might encourage more listings

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Crisis cartels: a COVID-19 side effect?

Over the years, crises have had a global impact on consumers and companies. The COVID-19 pandemic is no exception, with a number of companies being forced to close their doors for a prolonged period. National governments and competition authorities have shown increased willingness to allow companies to collaborate in order to combat the crisis. But what does economic theory suggest about the current COVID-19 crisis and its effect on the number of active cartels?

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Move fast and analyse things: sensible regulation for digital markets

Fast-moving digital markets require equally nimble regulatory authorities to oversee them. However, speed of action must not come at the cost of robust market analyses, unless we are to risk jeopardising the benefits digital markets have to offer. In this article—the first of a new series—we set the scene as governments around the world grapple

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A new era for collective actions in the UK

The long-awaited UK Supreme Court judgment in Mastercard v Merricks 1 (‘the Judgment’) was handed down last Friday morning. The Judgment allows a £14bn opt-out collective proceeding to proceed. The application for a collective proceeding, launched by Walter Hugh Merricks CBE in 2016, is the second in the CAT (following the ‘Scooters’ case in 2017)

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The Digital Services (balancing) Act: protecting consumers while enabling businesses

On 15 December, the European Commission published its long-awaited proposals for a new Digital Services Act (‘DSA’) and Digital Markets Act (‘DMA’). These landmark pieces of legislation will have wide-reaching effects throughout Europe’s economy. Here in Today’s Agenda, we consider some of the implications of the DSA for online platforms and their business users

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Has market fragmentation caused a deterioration in liquidity?

The EU equity trading market has seen significant changes in its market structure in the last decade. The introduction of competition among trading venues following MiFID has resulted in lower trading fees and greater choice for end users. However, both buy-side and sell-side participants have raised concerns about trading fragmentation leading to liquidity fragmentation. Has the market indeed become ‘thinner’, and have the actual costs of trading increased as a result?

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Preparing for resilience: analysing and treating risk

Resilience of infrastructure is moving up the policy agenda, according to a report published this year by the UK’s National Infrastructure Commission (NIC). The NIC considers resilience to be characterised by an ability to ‘Anticipate, Resist, Absorb, Recover, Adapt and Transform’. Dr Rupert Booth, Oxera Economic Adviser, examines the first element—‘Anticipate’. He considers the role of the economist in working with executives on the analysis and treatment of risk as the first step in creating a resilience strategy

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Social discount rates: inequality and the long term

The second article in this two-part series on Social Discount Rates (SDRs), as used in project and policy appraisal, discusses new evidence on how the rate at which the SDR declines could change, and how it could be adjusted to take inequality into account. Adjusting for inequality can reduce the discount rate even further than highlighted in our first article—to below 2%. The SDR could also decline more slowly than currently assumed. This would increase the benefit–cost ratio (BCR) of almost all projects seeking approval for government funding

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Au revoir to Pascale Déchamps

Oxera Partner Pascale Déchamps takes on a new role at the French Competition Authority. Pascale joined Oxera in 2013 and has made a remarkable contribution to the firm’s growth. Her expertise, experience and passion for economics have been recognised on numerous occasions by clients, regulators and judges, and formally by Global Competition Review and Who’s

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Looking forward to 2021

2020 has been a turbulent year in many ways, yet we have seen some incredible advances and positive changes. In our end-of-year video, we reflect on the resilience of our clients and colleagues, and reasons to be optimistic as we head into 2021.  

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