Keywords: Impact Assessment; Event Study; Antitrust Enforcement; Deterrence; Fines; Performance of Public Administration.
For a public administration to be accountable, it is necessary to quantify its performances, in terms of some measures of welfare. In this contribution we provide an assessment of the antitrust enforcement of Italian Competition Authority (Ica) by using three different techniques: a) estimation of the direct effect, carried out at the moment in which cases are concluded (ex ante assessment); b) evaluation of the impact of enforcement on equity returns (event study); c) analysis of sources of the perceived quality of antitrust enforcement. The direct impact assessment shows that the effect of Ica's antitrust enforcement (higher than annual 300 ml. in the last 10 years) accounts for almost 6 times Ica's total expenses. Such evaluation, conducted on the basis of Oecd assumptions, is consistent with stock market reaction to the enforcement. Our event study also reveals that antitrust enforcement induces a robust reputational loss suffered by firms involved in the cases. And finally, the perceived quality of Ica's enforcement is associated to the absolute value of sanctions and to the number of cases (with fines).