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The search returned 3 results.

Price Signalling in Ireland: journal article

Leading the Way?

Paul K Gorecki

European Competition and Regulatory Law Review, Volume 6 (2022), Issue 4, Page 294 - 305

In 2022 Ireland made two important contributions to the debate over price signalling: (i) the publication of the National Competition Agency’s (NCAs) extensive investigation into alleged anticompetitive price signalling in private motor insurance (PMI); and (ii) the enactment of legislation that makes ‘the sharing of future information on prices …’ a specific presumed by object offence. The evidence does not support the NCA’s conclusion that the public PMI premium increase announcements by five insurers, a broker and a broker representative body were either a by object or a by effect breach of competition law. There are solid grounds for following the European Union’s existing open-ended approach to adding by object breaches through the development of case law, rather than legislating specific new by object offences. The sharing of information can, depending on the circumstances, be anticompetitive or procompetitive. It is thus inappropriate to characterise sharing of information as a by object offence, without an appropriate definition and guidance. This is not to imply that the competition in the PMI market in Ireland cannot be improved, as the European Commission’s acceptance in 2022 of binding commitments from the insurers trade association easing access to a data sharing platform so as to facilitate entry demonstrates. Keywords: private motor insurance, Competition Act 2002, Competition (Amendment) Act 2022, concerted practice, tacit collusion, Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, price signalling.

Closing the Algorithmic Gap: journal article

Rethinking Dynamic Pricing under Articles 101 and 102 TFEU

Bruce Wardhaugh

European Competition and Regulatory Law Review, Volume 5 (2021), Issue 2, Page 122 - 131

This article is concerned with regulation of dynamic pricing algorithms under the EU competition regime. We show that the competition rules as presently interpreted fail to inadequately capture the harm to consumer welfare that dynamic pricing algorithms may cause. This creates an enforcement ‘gap’ in a competition regime which purports to protect consumer welfare. We then argue the existing rules need to be slightly reframed, if such algorithmic practices are to be effectively controlled. This reformulation includes regarding coordinated price elevation as a concerted practice which Articles 101 and 102 TFEU can interdict, viewing price elevation in algorithmic markets as a form of tacit collusion and as a breach of dominant undertakings’ special responsibility not to further weaken competition in a market. Our suggestions are consistent with existing Article 101 and 102 TFEU case law and allow for a more effective response to any welfare reducing threat found in algorithmic markets. Keywords: Article 101 TFEU, Article 102 TFEU, algorithms, dynamic pricing, tacit collusion, object/effects, concerted practice

Tacit Collusion and the Boundaries of Competition Law: journal article

The Parallel Case of Common Ownership and Algorithmic Pricing

John Weche, Thomas Weck

European Competition and Regulatory Law Review, Volume 5 (2021), Issue 1, Page 4 - 10

Tacit collusion gives rise to major practical challenges for the enforcement of competition law. A problem which is well known from the gas station markets, now acquires new topicality with the intervention of institutional investors (‘common ownership’) and the use of online pricing algorithms. This article connects the previous strands of discussion and establishes a link to the discussion regarding a New Competition Tool. Keywords: tacit collusion; algorithms; common ownership; Digital Markets Act; DMA; New Competition Tool; NCT

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