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. Many students in these programs have considerable overlap in their coursework with courses offered to PhD students in economics. After the merger fell through, some argued that T-Mobile was doomed. 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. 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. They find a similar pattern in banking. 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. 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. Copyright © President & Fellows of Harvard College, "Clusters and the New Economics of Competition. These are not isolated cases. 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. Requirements for Honors Eligibility: 15 courses (60 credits) We offer a primary concentration and a secondary field. 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. Indeed, the power of new tech giants to use their potent networks and the vast amounts of data they collect to thwart competition is one of the biggest challenges facing antitrust authorities today. Visualize global trade data and economic growth opportunities for every country Ph.D. in Economics. That’s more worrisome, Haltiwanger says, because it portends slower productivity growth. Critics argue that index funds by design hold stakes in large numbers of companies—some of which compete with one another, some of which buy and sell to one another. 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. You will learn how businesses think about pricing, production, and differentiation. Should evidence mount that competition is suffering because of this trend, cross-ownership by institutional investors should take its place alongside antitrust and regulation as a lever in managing the troubling decline in competition across the U.S. economy. Antitrust authorities must also tackle the vexing question of what constitutes illegal “predatory” pricing in today’s market. 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. 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. 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. Such regulatory restraints on competition are coming under increasing scrutiny. 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. In remedying the harmful effects of industry consolidation and declining competition, an obvious place to start is antitrust regulation and enforcement. It is the only electricity market design that integrates The government’s approach to antitrust violations is due for an overhaul. It’s a similar story in the beer business. Once those protections expire, however, prices theoretically should fall as makers of generics enter the market. 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. That’s good for shareholders, of course, but it’s not so good for consumers or the overall economy. Kwoka’s meta-analysis suggests that antitrust authorities should be more inclined to block mergers in order to increase competition. Porter, Michael E. "Clusters and the New Economics of Competition." Concentration in hospital markets is also associated with higher prices, with surges of up to 20% following mergers. Gabriel received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in 2013. ** Read the Fall 2020 DUS Letter from our Director of Undergraduate Studies, Prof. Jeffrey Miron. In this article, I examine the troubling effect of industry consolidation on competition. Are companies that rise to the top “heroes” or “villains”? California’s Board of Barbering and Cosmetology requires 1,600 hours of education and hands-on training before a person can take the licensing exam, and another 3,200 hours of apprenticeship and 220 hours of related training are required for licensure. Despite an overall picture of declining competition, it’s not always easy to determine whether or to what extent consumers in a particular industry are harmed by consolidation. Copyright © 2020 Harvard Business School Publishing. We now operate in a winner-take-most world, the argument goes, in which superstar firms with higher productivity capture a larger slice of the market; Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google have risen to the top because of their propensity to innovate. Economic theory suggests that oligopolies — industries in which a few firms dominate without much competition — lead to increases in price and reductions in output. In some industries, concentration clearly is driven less by innovative superstars than by anticompetitive behavior. And regulators need to pay more attention to protecting economic vitality and consumer well-being — and less to industry lobbyists. The short answer: It’s complicated. Welcome to Undergraduate Economics at Harvard! 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. Research Data Management @Harvard Harvard Business Review 76, no. This motivating and fun team learning experience begins with competitions at the state level. When he took another look, in 2017, the story had changed. 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. (Their clout caught the attention of European regulators long ago.) Below is a list of in-print works in this collection, presented in series order or publication order as applicable. In determining whether competition is on the decline, a review of prices by some researchers yields an inconclusive result. Schmalz and his colleagues don’t allege explicit collusion; rather, they claim that common ownership reduces the incentive to compete. There’s no question that most industries are becoming more concentrated. 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. The Ph.D. It tests micro and macroeconomic principles as well as knowledge of the world economy. Gabriel Chodorow-Reich is an assistant professor of economics at Harvard. 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. Prices. All work must be your original content and must have been produced solely for this competition. "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. “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. And regulators need to pay more attention to protecting economic vitality and consumer well-being—and less to industry lobbyists. 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. Despite the proliferation of craft breweries, two producers dominate the U.S. market: Anheuser-Busch InBev (Beck’s, Budweiser, Corona, Michelob, Stella Artois) and MillerCoors (Blue Moon, Coors, Miller, Molson). When corporations use their market power to crush competition, problems arise. 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. Rather, it’s the combined effect of size, concentration, and, importantly, incumbent-friendly regulation on the healthy competition that propels economic growth. 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. This is a start, but regulators and policymakers have more work to do. Ordering multiple books? But when corporations use their market power to shape the policy and regulatory environment in ways that crush competition, problems arise. Consider the wireless telephone business. Big firms account for higher shares of industry revenue and are reaping historically large profits relative to their investment. 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. In a healthy economy, companies continually are born, fail, expand, and contract, while new jobs are created and others are destroyed. Open global markets, rapid transportation, and high-speed communications should allow any company to source any thing from any place at any time. High and rising profits in an increasingly concentrated market are typically a sign of lessening competition and increased market power by dominant firms. You will dive into topics like customer demand, supplier cost, markets, and competition. Even-more-complicated issues will arise as the economy evolves. Take airlines. 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) The tech giants pose unique challenges, but they also represent just one piece of a broader story: a troubling phenomenon of too little competition throughout the U.S. economy. The notion was to spur competition and lower prices, discouraging the practice of some audiologists of bundling an exam with the purchase of a hearing aid. 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. The economy is more concentrated. So are industry leaders heroes or villains? Much of the increase is a result of states extending the occupations for which licenses are required. Lately, though, declining dynamism has spread to the tech sector. Enquiries on the LSE SU Economics Essay Competition should be sent to economics@lsesu.org. This line of thinking is controversial. 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. Check the box next to each item or use the “Select All” button, then click “Add to Cart.” HUP eBooks are available from a variety of vendors. Take the pharmaceutical industry. The Economics Proficiency Exam will be available online as a self-diagnostic assessment for ECON S-1010, ECON S-1012, and ECON S-1123. Lawyer-judges Robert Bork and Richard Posner and Nobel laureate economists George Stigler and Oliver Williamson laid the intellectual foundation for this shift, which spread to the policy arena and the courts in the early 1980s. However, research from the wider economy (including the tech sector) uncovers classic signs of unhealthy concentration: rising profits, weak investment, and low business dynamism. His research lies primarily within this field, and studies how firms bargain, contract and form supply relationships in imperfectly competitive markets. By 2017, competition among wireless carriers was so stiff that Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen cited falling prices for cell phone service as a cause of low inflation. 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. Mounting evidence, however, strongly suggests that harmful forces are also at play. 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. Program in the Department of Economics at Harvard is addressed to students of high promise who wish to prepare themselves in teaching and research in academia or for responsible positions in government, research organizations, or business enterprises. At the macro level, it is important to know who pays for health care and how best to allocate limited resources to various services, diseases, and health system components in order to maximize the beneficial effect of interventions and improve population health. 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. Previously, I was a postdoctoral scholar at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and Harvard Business School. Robin S. Lee is a Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where he has taught courses on industrial organization since 2014. Please see the Economics Summer School webpage. 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. CHANGES TO 2020 REGISTRATION GUIDELINES. But in practice, location remains central to competition. Global Case Competition Participants, In the last year, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives. Industries in which cross-ownership is greater, they note, tend to have corporate compensation packages that offer less reward for beating the competition than do industries with little cross-ownership. Others, however, point fingers internally to some of Harvard… Consider beer. Over the past few years, the economics team has participated at a number of competitions. There’s no question that most American industries have become more concentrated. How about when a big firm swallows a tiny firm that might have grown into a mighty oak? Sharat Ganapati of Dartmouth, for instance, looks at data from 1972 to 2012 and concludes that increased concentration in manufacturing is correlated with higher prices, which is consistent with declining competition, but also with stable output, which is not. Unable to overcome the opposition of the Obama administration, however, AT&T abandoned the deal five months after announcing it. Owing in part to incumbent firms’ influence in shaping policy to preserve their positions at the expense of start-ups and other would-be competitors, the United States is no longer held up as an exemplar of free markets and regulatory restraint. Health economics is a crucial dimension of global health delivery. This thinking solidified under the Reagan Justice Department, and for better or worse, the antitrust authorities stood by over the coming decades as the economy grew more concentrated. ", 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. In the 2000s, under Barack Obama, the stance became somewhat more aggressive, but it remains unclear whether his executive orders to promote competitive markets, issued in the closing innings of his administration, were mere symbolism or a serious effort. Today, profits are up in industries in which a shrinking number of players have a growing share of the business. The dentists are not happy. The exam will not take place in-person on the Harvard campus this summer. To learn more about Ec, please peruse all the info on this website: See our Fall 2020 Key Dates. coordination for competition in electricity markets. Despite their undeniable popularity, Apple, Monopolies and Tech Giants: The Insights You Need from HBR. 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. 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. His research focuses on macroeconomics, finance, and labor economics. He has published five books and edited many more. Browse the latest online economics courses from Harvard University, including "Energy Within Environmental Constraints" and "Tackling a Perfect Storm: COVID-19’s Economic Impacts and Crafting an Effective Policy Response." Economics & Business Search Results: 894 found (sorted by date) Click on a column heading to sort search results by title, author, etc. Harvard Business Publishing is an affiliate of Harvard Business School. 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. 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. The number of jobs created by businesses less than a year old dropped from a peak of 4.7 million in the late 1990s to 3 million in 2015. Some of the requirements are motivated by an urge to protect consumers, but others were clearly orchestrated through lobbying from trade associations eager to raise barriers to entry, limit the number of players in their profession, and raise prices. Economists are trying to understand whether this is necessarily a bad thing for competition. In theory, location should no longer be a source of competitive advantage. With scholarly caution, he noted “a moderate but continued increase in aggregate concentration.” The Economist, using U.S. Economic Census data, found a similar trend. When enforced, these agreements inhibit a worker’s ability to switch jobs and constrain the ability of new firms to hire talent. The explosion of state occupational licensing rules also harms both workers and new entrants. The National Economics Challenge (NEC) is the country’s only economics competition of its kind for high school students. Today's economic map of the world is characterized by what Porter calls clusters: critical masses in one place of linked industries and institutions—from suppliers to universities to government agencies—that enjoy unusual competitive success in a particular field. Early in his tenure as President Trump’s FDA commissioner, Scott Gottlieb vowed to change the REMS rules to prevent drug makers from using them to thwart generic competition and in November announced a preliminary plan to do so. 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. ... this work includes a general study of pricing in three different markets—perfect competition, perfect monopoly, and imperfect competition. Business investment across the economy has perked up lately, but it is not as robust as one might expect given the surge in profits, the extraordinarily low-cost of equity and debt, and the amount of cash on corporate balance sheets. The troubling effect of industry consolidation and other forces on productivity, wages, and income inequality. 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. Today, they collect 65%. But even as the number of retailers starting up and dying off plunged, the industry became more productive. Topics include supply and demand, economic decision making, social efficiency, perfect and imperfect competition, labor markets, capital markets, and market failures. 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. Economics for Managers applies fundamental economic principles to real-world business challenges. These include Business Economics, Political Economy and Government, Public Policy, and Health Policy. With waning competitive pressure, productivity growth slows, wages stagnate, and the gap between winners and losers widens. Essay on the topic of national unity which of the following is the first step to writing an informative essay chegg . Many also have dissertation committees that include faculty members of the economics department.We encourage tho… regulators and policymakers have more work to do. Seen through the hero lens, the prospect of selling out to Facebook (or Google or Apple) offers many economic advantages. Course description. 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. Michigan requires 1,460 days of training for athletic trainers, but only 26 days for emergency medical technicians. In 2015, the Justice Department, citing corporate documents in its initial objection to a subsequent Anheuser-Busch acquisition, said the brewer’s strategic plan for pricing “reads like a how-to manual for successful price coordination.”. The Harvard School prohibited innovative forms of competition that could have enhanced economic efficiency, while the Chicago School allowed competitors to engage in certain conduct that harmed consumers in many domestic Acquisitions that in the past were too small to attract the usual antitrust scrutiny can eliminate potential competition, especially in a world where a company like WhatsApp can grow in just a few years to reach a billion users a day. The economic effect of this growth is that huge investors increasingly hold substantial stakes in all major competitors in an industry. Economic geography in an era of global competition poses a paradox. These are live issues. TBH is only one of more than 60 such acquisitions by Facebook since 2010. Some professors attribute the recent losses to rising competition from economics programs at peer universities. Their investment general study of pricing in today ’ s good for consumers or the overall economy Obama,. 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