Overhauled Horizontal Merger Guidelines: Operating Within the New Antitrust Framework

Preparing for Heightened FTC and DOJ Review and Data Requirements

First revisions in two decades issued Aug. 19

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

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Conducted on Thursday, October 14, 2010

Recorded event now available

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Course Materials

This CLE course will explain the practical impact of the newly revised horizontal merger guidelines for companies. The panel will outline key changes and offer tips for companies and counsel for navigating the new antitrust enforcement environment.


On Aug. 19, the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division and the Federal Trade Commission issued much-anticipated revised horizontal merger guidelines. The guidelines outline how the agencies evaluate the likely competitive impact of mergers and whether the mergers comply with antitrust law.

The new guidelines adopt a more subjective, flexible approach to each transaction. They make significant changes to several elements of the merger process, including market definition, market shares and concentration thresholds—and place increased emphasis on economic evidence.

The guidelines are often cited by the courts and have been used to reject agency challenges to mergers. As the revisions bring the guidelines in line with the practices of the agencies, it is important for companies and counsel to understand the changes and how they will impact merger analysis.

Listen as our authoritative panel of antitrust attorneys examines the key changes to the horizontal merger guidelines, discusses the implications of these revisions, and offers strategies for navigating in the new antitrust enforcement landscape.



  1. Key changes
    1. Market definition
    2. Concentration thresholds
    3. Types and sources of evidence
    4. Unilateral effects
    5. Coordinated effects
    6. Price discrimination
    7. Entry conditions
    8. Margin assumptions
    9. Efficiences
    10. Partial acquisitions
    11. Monopsony
    12. Consummated mergers
  2. Implications of the changes
    1. On merger analysis
    2. On merger litigation
  3. Strategies for navigating in the new antitrust enforcement environment


The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • How have the revised merger guidelines shifted the focus from coordinated effect to unilateral effect?
  • How does the reduced focus on predicted price increases impact merger analysis?
  • What changes do the guidelines make to the HHI market concentration screen?


Anthony W. Swisher
Anthony W. Swisher

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld

He counsels clients on a wide range of antitrust issues, including proposed merger transactions, distribution, pricing...  |  Read More

Gregory Vistnes
Gregory Vistnes

Vice President
Charles River Associates

He specializes in the economic analysis of antitrust and competition issues. He has analyzed competition in a broad...  |  Read More

Michael H. Byowitz
Michael H. Byowitz

Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz

He focuses his practice on antitrust law and policy, and principally advising multinational corporations on major...  |  Read More

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