“Bright Line” Apple v. Pepper Invites Further Economic Analysis


The authors discuss the implications of the Apple v. Pepper Supreme Court decision for the economic analysis that will be needed at the class certification stage for certain direct purchaser class action cases.

While Apple v. Pepper may have offered clarity on which entities have standing to recover antitrust damages in cases where a platform operator facilitates transactions between buyers and sellers but does not set prices, the decision also appears to create a more rigorous standard for economic analysis at the class certification stage for these specific types of direct purchaser class actions.

In this article published in Competition Policy International, Celeste Saravia and Todd Kumler discuss the economic analysis of pass-through when third-party sellers set prices. The authors argue that this analysis will be necessary to determine if common methods and evidence can be used to demonstrate that all putative class members were impacted by alleged anticompetitive conduct. Such cases will require additional economic analysis beyond what is typically necessary at the class certification stage for direct purchaser plaintiffs.

This article was originally published by Competition Policy International in July 2019.

The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of Cornerstone Research.

“Bright Line” Apple v. Pepper Invites Further Economic Analysis


  • San Francisco

Celeste C. Saravia

Vice President,
Cornerstone Research;
University of California, Berkeley

  • New York

Todd J. Kumler