Managing Principal Pierre Cremieux Discusses Analytic Challenges in Class Action Matters
September 22, 2015
On September 18, 2015, Managing Principal Pierre Cremieux participated in an expert panel discussion on the increased use of complex economic analyses in global antitrust class action matters. The panel, "Antitrust today - An academic perspective of the good, the bad, and the ugly," was held at the Global Competition Review Live 3rd Annual New York Conference. Panelists noted that the spread of collective redress in the United States and internationally has the potential to involve the use of economic models based on insufficient data and benchmarks that are poorly defined.
In particular, Dr. Cremieux explained that the power of econometrics to provide outcomes in these matters is complicated by the high level of expertise required to conduct sophisticated analyses, as well as by the potential of a single variable to alter the results. In In re TFT-LCD (Flat Panel) Antitrust Litigation, for example, Dr. Cremieux explained that the removal of a single variable from the same econometric model significantly altered the outcome of the assessment of the alleged overcharge caused by collusion among liquid-crystal-display manufacturers. "That's a problem," Dr. Cremieux noted, "because you've got two excellent economists in front of a jury saying, here's my model at 20 per cent, and here's my model at 0 per cent, and you probably don't understand the difference, but if you did you'd think it was trivial anyway." The panelists agreed that there is a great need for robust data sets and factual evidence to avoid the "disastrous" outcomes that can result from assessments based on limited evidence.
Other participants on this panel were Janusz Ordover, Professor of Economics at New York University; Eleanor Fox, Professor of Trade Regulation at New York University School of Law; and Anu Bradford, Director of European Legal Studies at Columbia Law School. This panel was featured in the article, "Antitrust class actions are a double-edged sword, say economists" (Global Competition Review, September 21, 2015).
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