Antitrust Around the World: An Empirical Analysis of the Scope of Competition Laws and Their Effects

Keith N. Hylton, Boston University School of Law
Fei Deng, National Economic Research Associates


Since the early studies of Arnold Harberger, George Stigler, and Richard Posner, there has been a growing movement calling for the use of empirical evidence to judge the effectiveness of antitrust law in securing its goals. That there have been relatively few such studies is attributable to the lack of useful statistical information on the law, enforcement policies, and penalties.

In this article, we present an effort to use information on competition laws around the world to assess their scope and effectiveness. The foundation of this study is a dataset that codes key features of the competition laws of 102 countries. It first compares the scope of the laws overall and then assesses various subcomponents, such as the law governing dominance, collusive conduct, and mergers. The second question examined is whether a nation's competition law has any effect on the intensity of competition within its borders.