In 2011, AT&T sought to acquire a struggling competitor, T-Mobile USA, in a $39 billion deal that would have reduced the number of major competitors in the industry from four to three. The U.S. approach to antitrust has evolved significantly over the past century. Harvard Business Publishing is an affiliate of Harvard Business School. Housed directly in the communities we serve, our data-driven case management and programming are tailored to meet the specific needs of each individual. TBH is only one of more than 60 such acquisitions by Facebook since 2010. Consider the wireless telephone business. “Although provider concentration could produce efficiencies that benefit purchasers of health care services, the evidence does not point in that direction,” Berkeley’s Brent Fulton concludes in a 2017 review of the literature. Software engineers and CEOs are not the only ones affected by such regulations: Among employees earning $40,000 or less, about one in seven (13.5%) is bound by a noncompete. Previously, I was a postdoctoral scholar at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and Harvard Business School. Melissa Dell wins 2020 Clark Medal Harvard economist’s work focuses on the lasting effects that conflicts, economic conditions, and institutions can have on a society April 28, 2020 American economy on the bubble Despite their undeniable popularity, Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook are drawing increasing scrutiny from economists, legal scholars, politicians, and policy wonks, who accuse these firms of using their size and strength to crush potential competitors. I then look at the role of antitrust law and regulation in shaping today’s economic environment and explore strategies to improve the flow of innovation, enhance dynamism in business and in labor markets, and ultimately deliver higher standards of living for all. Regulations in the labor market, along with certain employer practices, can also conspire to constrain competition, by limiting workers’ ability to seek new or higher-paying jobs. Prices. The most famous examples are found in Silicon Valley and Hollywood, but clusters dot the world's landscape. British library research papers reflective essay vocabulary, common app statement vs essay root cause analysis essay example competition economics essay Harvard. A federal judge disagreed, and the merger was consummated. It’s a similar story in the beer business. The best way to discern if increasing concentration is worrisome economically is to look at profits, investment, business dynamism, and prices. The winners are winning bigger, while the number of new start-ups is falling. In theory, location should no longer be a source of competitive advantage. In the 1950s and 1960s, many mergers — even ones that would have led to relatively modest increases in concentration — were routinely challenged, but in the 1970s the antitrust framework began to shift toward challenging many fewer mergers. Porter, Michael E. "Clusters and the New Economics of Competition." When Facebook snapped it up, the app was only two months old but had attracted more than 5 million users and logged more than a billion sent messages. In most (though not all) cases, the data points to a lack of competition. Kwoka’s meta-analysis suggests that antitrust authorities should be more inclined to block mergers in order to increase competition. The exam will not take place in-person on the Harvard campus this summer. Antitrust authorities must also tackle the vexing question of what constitutes illegal “predatory” pricing in today’s market. The more lenient approach relied on three ideas: that harm from increased concentration had to be weighed against the efficiencies to be achieved, that horizontal mergers between competitors were harmful only if they led to less output, and that vertical mergers between supplier and buyer generally were not a problem. The makers of those drugs, in some instances, cite the restrictions as a reason not to supply a generic maker with a sample to recreate the drugs. Some professors attribute the recent losses to rising competition from economics programs at peer universities. The promise of a generous payout is a huge incentive to innovative entrepreneurs. "Economic Competition" is a descriptor in the National Library of Medicine's controlled vocabulary thesaurus, MeSH (Medical Subject Headings).Descriptors are arranged in a hierarchical structure, which enables searching at various levels of specificity. The troubling effect of industry consolidation and other forces on productivity, wages, and income inequality. We jointly organize the Essay competition with HUEA, and we also publish the … Gabriel Chodorow-Reich is an assistant professor of economics at Harvard. Economics for Managers takes you inside a growing online retailer, an events ticket broker, a multinational publishing company, and other firms evaluating market demand, wrestling with pricing strategy, and looking to identify ways to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. Schmalz and his colleagues don’t allege explicit collusion; rather, they claim that common ownership reduces the incentive to compete. Michigan requires 1,460 days of training for athletic trainers, but only 26 days for emergency medical technicians. Many also have dissertation committees that include faculty members of the economics department.We encourage tho… It wasn’t. You will learn how businesses think about pricing, production, and differentiation. Institutional investors and index funds have experienced spectacular growth over the past several decades. Economics & Business Search Results: 894 found (sorted by date) Click on a column heading to sort search results by title, author, etc. We’ll never know what TBH or Halli Labs or Orbitera or Instagram or WhatsApp or Oculus VR might have become had Facebook not absorbed them — or what companies might have been started had prospective founders not figured that it would be impossible to compete with Facebook. Geographic, cultural, and institutional proximity provides companies with special access, closer relationships, better information, powerful incentives, and other advantages that are difficult to tap from a distance. And they cite anecdotal evidence undermining the notion that institutional holders are reluctant activists: For example, in the 2017 showdown between Procter & Gamble and activist Nelson Peltz, Vanguard sided with P&G, while State Street and BlackRock voted almost all their shares for Peltz. Policymakers also need to scrutinize regulations that restrict competition across the economy. Economists are trying to understand whether this is necessarily a bad thing for competition. According to Yale economist Fiona Scott Morton, however, over the past 10 to 15 years “industry participants have managed to disable many of these competitive mechanisms and create niches in which drugs can be sold with little to no competition.” For example, the marketing of some drugs with particularly severe side effects is now very tightly controlled through the FDA’s Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy, or REMS. In some industries, concentration clearly is driven less by innovative superstars than by anticompetitive behavior. How about when a big firm swallows a tiny firm that might have grown into a mighty oak? Today, profits are up in industries in which a shrinking number of players have a growing share of the business. When SABMiller and MolsonCoors (the number two and three brewers at the time) combined U.S. operations, in 2008, prices abruptly rose — and not only for their beers but also for those of competitor Anheuser-Busch. Innovation superstars like Google have created winner-take-most markets largely by exploiting network effects, not through predatory behavior. The government’s approach to antitrust violations is due for an overhaul. ** Browse through our Economics Concentrator Guide. Economists Nathan Miller of Georgetown and Matthew Weinberg of Drexel estimated that prices were at least 6% and 8% higher than they would have been without the joint venture and suggested that the competing brewers coordinated pricing. Prices following a subset of these mergers rose by an average of 4.3%, holding other factors constant, Kwoka found. The argument for reexamining current merger guidelines — and, where appropriate, challenging the case law that is said to make Department of Justice and FTC lawyers reluctant to bring cases — is very strong. Today, they collect 65%. regulators and policymakers have more work to do. Team A, which consisted of seniors Allen Haugh, Spencer Buzdon, Chris Ware and junior Dylan Suffredini, placed first out of 35 four-person teams representing 22 schools from across the country. And with bipartisan enthusiasm and the blessing of the Food and Drug Administration, Congress in 2017 instructed the FDA to make it easier for consumers to buy hearing aids at Costco and other retailers, just as they can buy reading glasses at nonspecialty stores such as CVS. Harvard economics essay competition 2020 Better Tomorrows supports youth, adult, and senior residents of affordable housing communities and their neighboring communities. In the first quarter of 2017, Berkshire Hathaway, BlackRock, Vanguard, and Primecap owned a combined 23% stake in Delta, 29% in United, 31% in American, and 38% in Southwest. Harvard Kennedy School Library The HKS Library specializes in supporting research in politics, public policy, international development and other social science/business/economics topics of interest to the Harvard Kennedy School community. So are industry leaders heroes or villains? Health care is another stark example. In the U.S., the rate of birth of new firms (as a percentage of all firms) fell from above 13% in the late 1980s to around 8% in 2015, according to the most recent official data. There’s no question that most industries are becoming more concentrated. CAMBRIDGE, MA – The Harvard Environmental Economics Program has, for the eleventh consecutive year, awarded three prizes to Harvard University students for the best research papers addressing a topic in environmental, energy, or natural-resource economics – one prize each for an undergraduate paper or senior thesis, master’s student paper, and doctoral student paper. The preponderance of evidence across the proliferating body of research suggests that industry consolidation is causing a troubling decline in competition, limiting the country’s capacity to innovate, create jobs, and sustain overall economic health. His two most recent books are The Future of Europe: Reform or Decline, published by MIT Press, and Fighting Poverty in the US and Europe: A World of Difference, published by Oxford University Press. Take the pharmaceutical industry. “Investment is weak relative to profitability and valuation,” NYU’s Thomas Philippon and German Gutierrez concluded in a 2017 analysis built on the historical relationship between investment and the ratio of the market value of a company’s debt and equity to the replacement cost of its assets. But when corporations use their market power to shape the policy and regulatory environment in ways that crush competition, problems arise. Of the 893 industries it examined — from dog food and battery makers to airlines and credit cards — two-thirds had grown more concentrated since 2007. Probably a bit of both. And regulators need to pay more attention to protecting economic vitality and consumer well-being—and less to industry lobbyists. Economics for Managers applies fundamental economic principles to real-world business challenges. To learn more about Ec, please peruse all the info on this website: See our Fall 2020 Key Dates. Creating a category of “dental therapists” to provide some routine services “could benefit consumers by increasing choice, competition and access to care, especially for the underserved,” the FTC said. The increases were particularly large in the airline and health care industries. This is not the economics class you took in college. Issues such as the environment, taxation, and income distribution are … Economic theory suggests that oligopolies — industries in which a few firms dominate without much competition — lead to increases in price and reductions in output. Take airlines. Another signal of declining competitive pressure is firms’ ability to increase profits without much investment; in competitive markets, companies are driven to invest more to stay ahead of their rivals. According to James Bessen of Boston University, the increasing share of revenue captured by the top firms in industries outside of high-tech is explained by those firms’ adoption of proprietary, mission-critical information technology: They’re bigger because they’re better. Critics also take issue with Schmalz’s methods, pointing out that the research relies on the way money managers are required to report holdings, which combines shares held for all sorts of clients. John Haltiwanger, a University of Maryland economist, notes that the decline in dynamism in the U.S. originated in the retail sector in the 1980s and 1990s. Porter explains how clusters affect competition in three broad ways: first, by increasing the productivity of companies based in the area; second, by driving the direction and pace of innovation; and third, by stimulating the formation of new businesses within the cluster. Quidsi struggled, flirted with Walmart, but eventually sold itself to Amazon. Using data for all publicly traded U.S. firms from 1950 to 2014, Jan De Loecker of Princeton and Jan Eeckhout of University College London found that markups rose from about 18% in 1980 to 67% in 2014. And unfortunately, there’s more than enough evidence to conclude that a substantial portion of the U.S. economy suffers from a lack of competition. Course description. Consider Amazon’s alleged use of below-cost pricing to pressure and ultimately acquire a potential competitor. Even-more-complicated issues will arise as the economy evolves. How does this rise in cross-ownership by institutional investors affect competition? CHANGES TO 2020 REGISTRATION GUIDELINES. This was dubbed “the Walmart effect,” because of the impact of the giant retailer not only on the efficiency of its industry but on the entire U.S. economy. The Ph.D. (Their clout caught the attention of European regulators long ago.) A comprehensive review of retrospective studies of the thousands of mergers and joint ventures over the past 25 years by Northeastern University economist John Kwoka judged that antitrust authorities had been too tolerant both in letting certain types of mergers go unchallenged and in imposing conditions on mergers that were cleared. You will dive into topics like customer demand, supplier cost, markets, and competition. In an eyebrow-raising 2017 study, Princeton’s Alan Krueger and Orley Ashenfelter found that 58% of major chains (Burger King, Jiffy Lube, H&R Block, and dozens more) restrict and sometimes prohibit one franchisee from hiring workers away from another, to the obvious detriment of people seeking to change jobs. Although the United States doesn’t regulate pharmaceutical prices, as most rich countries do, it offers makers of brand-name drugs patent protection, periods of exclusivity, and other ways to recoup their investment in expensive research that produces new drugs. The short answer: It’s complicated. Despite the proliferation of craft breweries, four brewers hold nearly 90% of the U.S. beer market. The Farmington Economics A Team won the 12th Annual Harvard Pre-Collegiate Economic Challenge on Saturday, April 1. In 2014, under pressure from the Federal Communications Commission, the wireless phone industry finally agreed to allow consumers to unlock their cell phones if they wanted to change providers. ", The Agenda for the Next Generation of Health Care Information Technology, A Recovery Squandered: The State of U.S. Competitiveness 2019, NEJM Catalyst Innovations in Care Delivery. This line of thinking is controversial. This is a start, but regulators and policymakers have more work to do. It tests micro and macroeconomic principles as well as knowledge of the world economy. Research Data Management @Harvard It is time for antitrust authorities to renew their scrutiny of traditional mergers. Harvard Business School ... competition (15) competitive advantage (22) competitive strategy (34) complexity (8) conflict (6) ... economic development (21) economic history (3) economic institutions (19) economic sociology (6) economics (23) economics of design (7) education (17) We offer a primary concentration and a secondary field. In fact, in a dramatic change from the late 1990s, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says the U.S. now regulates product markets more heavily than many developed economies including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and Japan. coordination for competition in electricity markets. When he took another look, in 2017, the story had changed. The promise of a generous payout is a huge incentive to innovative entrepreneurs. Ultimately, curing what ails the U.S. economy requires political commitment and resolve to protect the robust competition that spurs productivity growth and improves American living standards, even when well-resourced interests resist. From corporate finance, industrial organization, and international business, to markets, competition, and government regulation, HBS doctoral students in Business Economics delve into some of the most pressing and relevant topics in the field of economics through the practical lens of business. The research on whether common ownership harms competition may be inconclusive, but the work is increasingly vital as the stakes in major companies held by large institutional investors continue to rise dramatically. Much of the increase is a result of states extending the occupations for which licenses are required. Legere dumped subsidies, lowered prices, offered more data and often poked fun at rivals.” T-Mobile thrived, signing up 4.4 million new subscribers in 2013. You must take and pass this online exam before registering for ECON S-1010, S-1012, or S-1123. Copyright © 2020 Harvard Business School Publishing. States generally don’t recognize credentials issued by other states, making it hard for licensed workers to move across state lines and protecting existing license holders in any state. A slowdown in business dynamism means that entrenched firms have less to fear from upstarts; as a result, the economy suffers as innovation slows and job growth stalls. He has published five books and edited many more. Lately, though, declining dynamism has spread to the tech sector. The 2017 settlement allows Hikma to begin marketing the generic version only after January 1, 2023. Requirements for Honors Eligibility: 15 courses (60 credits) Consider Facebook and its 2017 acquisition of TBH (for “To Be Honest”), a mobile app popular with teenagers that allows them to anonymously answer questions about their friends. Alberto Alesina was a leader in the field of Political Economics and has published extensively in all major academic journals in economics. Please see the Economics Summer School webpage. As an all-star quintet of economists—David Autor, David Dorn, Lawrence Katz, Christina Patterson, and John Van Reenen—points out, concentration and higher profits can be benign, perhaps even welcome, consequences of technological innovation. Outside of manufacturing, industry concentration is correlated with higher output and stable prices, neither of which conforms to the theory of oligopoly and declining competition. These include Business Economics, Political Economy and Government, Public Policy, and Health Policy. The team had their best-ever showing at the Harvard Pre-collegiate Economics Challenge (HPEC) last Saturday, with their A team making the finals and placing second in a field of 63 teams from around the world. Big firms account for higher shares of industry revenue and are reaping historically large profits relative to their investment. Concentration in hospital markets is also associated with higher prices, with surges of up to 20% following mergers. Measured against GDP, corporate after-tax profits are almost double what they were 25 years ago — and higher than at any time since World War II — yet business investment as a share of GDP is up only 13% over the same period. In a 2002 study, Lawrence White, a New York University economist, concluded that economy-wide concentration had fallen from the beginning of the 1980s to the end of the 1990s. Course description. With waning competitive pressure, productivity growth slows, wages stagnate, and the gap between winners and losers widens. The government’s approach to antitrust violations is due for an overhaul. Should they be more skeptical about mergers that might lessen “potential competition,” which occurs when one firm buys another in an adjacent market (think Google’s acquisition of YouTube or Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn)? Research from Schmalz’s team estimates that U.S. airfares are, on average, 3% to 7% higher than they would be without overlapping institutional-investor ownership. “Most firms are actively engaged in protecting their source of competitive advantage through a mixture of innovation, lobbying, or both,” says Luigi Zingales of the University of Chicago. These are not isolated cases. If we’re slow to take action to bolster competition — perhaps because incumbents successfully wield their power or because of a distaste for regulation of any sort — we risk diluting the dynamism of the economy and restricting the flow of innovations and new ideas, darkening the prospects for our children and grandchildren. A 2010 analysis found that the typical private-insurer payment for inpatient hospital stays in San Francisco (a highly concentrated market) was about 75% higher than in the more fragmented Los Angeles market. Please note: Due to COVID-19, the Economics Department is allowing concentrators in the Classes of 2021, 2022, and 2023 to count more Harvard Summer School Classes towards the Economics concentration. A wave of hospital mergers and consolidations across the country, driven in part by a push for better coordination of care and greater efficiency, has strengthened hospitals’ bargaining power relative to insurers’ without much sign of the hoped-for benefits in productivity. Economic geography in an era of global competition poses a paradox. The more complex, knowledge-based, and dynamic the world economy becomes, the more this is true. For example, it took Hikma Pharmaceuticals nearly seven years of litigation to get what it needed to produce, in accordance with REMS restrictions, a generic version of Jazz Pharmaceuticals’ major product, Xyrem, a $1-billion-a-year drug used to treat narcolepsy. In a healthy economy, companies continually are born, fail, expand, and contract, while new jobs are created and others are destroyed. Welcome to Undergraduate Economics at Harvard! When corporations use their market power to crush competition, problems arise. We need to do so to treat members of our own community with the fairness and compassion they deserve, to improve our scholarship, and to help improve the climate in economics more broadly. After the merger fell through, some argued that T-Mobile was doomed. In 2015, for instance, the Federal Trade Commission considered whether the merger of real estate sites Zillow and Trulia would reduce both companies’ incentives to develop new features for consumers. The Harvard Economics department needs to do better, and be more proactive in combating racism, than we have been. Many economic advantages profits in an increasingly concentrated market are typically a sign lessening. Increasing concentration is worrisome economically is to look at profits, investment business. Holding other factors constant, Kwoka found but even as the number of retailers starting up and off! 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