Title

Empirical Methods in Merger Analysis: Econometric Analysis of Pricing in FTC v. Staples

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

January 2006

Volume

13

Issue

2

Abstract

In 1997, the US Federal Trade Commission challenged the proposed merger of two office supply superstores, Staples and Office Depot in US District Court. Both the government and merging parties presented econometric studies examining the merger's likely impact on consumer pricing, predicting a price increase of 8.6% and 0.9% respectively. This article uses the extensive public record to provide a detailed discussion of the econometric models used in the case and to show how differences between the models led to the discrepancy between these estimates.

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