The introduction of the European Union (EU) Settlement Procedure in 2008 aimed at promoting the speed and efficiency of cartel investigations by the European Commission (EC). We use a data set that consists of 575 firm groups that were convicted by the EC for cartelization from 2000 to 2015 to investigate the impact of the settlement procedure on the probability to file an appeal. Based on the estimation of a model of a firm’s decision to appeal in the pre-settlement era, we subsequently run out-of-sample predictions to estimate the number of hypothetical appeals cases in the settlement era absent the settlement procedure. Comparing these estimates with the actual number of appeals, we find a settlement-induced reduction in the number of appeals of about 53%.

Keywords

Antitrust policy, cartels, settlements, appeals, ex-post evaluation, European Union