Alleged Price Discrimination and Unfair Competition among Automobile Dealerships

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Professor Asker submitted expert testimony on behalf of a major automobile manufacturer.

The plaintiffs, a group of car dealerships, alleged that a major automobile manufacturer’s dealer incentive programs led to discriminatory prices, payments, and vehicle allocations to certain dealerships relative to others. Defense counsel for the automobile manufacturer retained Cornerstone Research and John Asker of the University of California, Los Angeles, to assess these allegations and determine whether the vertical arrangements resulted in harm to competition or disadvantaged certain dealerships relative to others.

Professor Asker conducted extensive empirical analyses to determine whether the manufacturer’s incentive programs were functioning in a procompetitive manner.

To address these allegations, Professor Asker analyzed the design and implementation of the dealer incentive programs from an economic perspective and addressed plaintiff experts’ theories of harm and empirical analyses. He conducted extensive empirical analyses to determine whether the manufacturer’s incentive programs were functioning in a procompetitive manner. Professor Asker’s analysis also drew on the academic literature on vertical relationships. He submitted an expert report and testified both at deposition and in a court hearing. The case ultimately settled.


For more information on this case, contact Samid Hussain or Daniel Schmierer.

Case Expert

John Asker

Armen A. Alchian Chair in Economic Theory and Professor of Economics,
University of California, Los Angeles;
Senior Advisor, Cornerstone Research

  • New York

Samid Hussain

Senior Vice President

  • New York

Daniel Schmierer

Principal

  • Los Angeles

James Lee

Senior Manager