This collection of work by economist, consultant, and expert witness Franklin M. Fisher constitutes an integrated body of the economic analysis of the law, with particular emphasis on antitrust issues. Fisher's involvement with applying economic analysis to real disputes and to problems of microeconomic policy has resulted in valuable lessons. These lessons are incorporated in themes running through many of these essays about the uses and abuses, achievements and shortcomings, of economic analysis.
The book opens with a broad overview of key issues in antitrust law. Fisher stresses the importance of understanding the analytic tools used to examine monopoly and competition. He shows that the notion that simple indicators such as market share, or especially, profit rates can be used to provide an easy test for market power is badly mistaken. And he goes on to discuss oligopoly and its modern game theoretic treatment, which he sees as missing the questions that matter in real situations. Throughout, specific cases and policy issues are used to illustrate these important points.
The second part of the book looks at the regulation of television, particularly cable, an area in which Fisher has been active since cable television's early days. The book concludes with a section on economic analysis and the law with essays on such matters as the uses of statistical methods and punishment as a deterrent to crime.
About the Author
Franklin M. Fisher is Jane Berkowitz Carlton and Dennis William Carlton Professor of Microeconomics, Emeritus, at MIT. He was the lead expert economist for the defense, assisted by John J. McGowan and Joen E. Greenwood of Charles River Associates, in the major antitrust case U.S. v. IBM. His collected essays have been published in Econometrics: Essays in Theory and Applications and in Industrial Organization, Economics and the Law.