Brattle Principals Dr. Rosa Abrantes-Metz, Dr. Michael Cragg, Dr. Albert Metz, and Dr. Minjae Song coauthored an article on the economic issues of platforms in the American Bar Association’s Antitrust.

The article, “Understanding the Economics of Platforms,” discusses how the Supreme Court’s decision in Ohio v. American Express Co. (Amex) highlighted – and extended – the complexities of the economics of platforms. The Amex case, in which the Court assessed whether American Express’s antisteering provisions violated the Sherman Act, fundamentally changed the boundaries of market definition for transaction platforms. The Court’s decision defined transaction markets as two-sided, bringing together buyers and sellers through electronic interactions (such as with a credit card), and they require analysis on both sides of the market. This two-sided analysis may also extend to other types of platforms – such as media platforms, operating system-based networks, and search and matching networks – depending on the size or strength of indirect network effects.

The full article is available for download below.

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Understanding the Economics of Platforms