Economic Analysis in Antitrust Litigation: Empirical Evidence from the Courts, 1890-2018


This study investigates the evolution of economic analysis in antitrust litigation using an original dataset encompassing all decided antitrust cases since the enactment of the Sherman Act in 1890. Our analysis reveals three distinct breaks in the frequency of economists mentioned in antitrust cases: 1974, 1994, and 2007. Furthermore, we observe substantial fluctuations in the success rates of plaintiffs across various stages of litigation. Additionally, the study finds that the underlying statutory basis of cases involving economists has shifted over time, with a notable increase in Sherman Act cases and a corresponding decrease in Clayton Act and combined Clayton-Sherman Act cases.