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Division Update Spring 2012

Leading the Division’s Economic Analysis Group

In May of 2011, Dr. Fiona Scott-Morton was appointed as Deputy Assistant Attorney General (DAAG) for Economic Analysis for the Antitrust Division. Her primary responsibility is to ensure that the Division’s economic team provides sound analysis in support of the Division’s enforcement action and policy. Dr. Scott-Morton is currently on leave from the Yale School of Management, where she has taught economics since 1999.

Photo of Fiona Scott-Morton

In the history of the Antitrust Division, Dr. Scott-Morton is the first female DAAG for Economic Analysis. “It’s a great privilege to be the first, and it’s nice to be a role model for young aspiring economists who are looking for opportunities in public service,” said Dr. Scott-Morton.

Dr. Scott-Morton leads and manages the Division’s approximately 50 Ph.D. economists and the economic work related to analyzing the competitive effects of mergers. With the assistance of the Director of Economics, she directs and monitors staff’s approach, findings, and analysis of a matter and sets priorities. For investigations gearing up for litigation, she supervises expert witnesses and strategizes on the development and presentation of the economic evidence.

The Division’s economic team’s work, however, is not simply limited to Division matters. The Division routinely offers or submits comments to other Federal and State agencies concerning the competitive impact of certain regulations or legislation based on its significant expertise in antitrust enforcement and competition policy. As the DAAG, Dr. Scott-Morton oversees staff’s economic analysis and coordination with Division attorneys to provide comments to other agencies as part of the Division’s competition advocacy work.

Additionally, Dr. Scott-Morton is active in outreach efforts to inform and educate the public on the Division’s economic analysis and policy through various speaking engagements. For example, Dr. Scott-Morton participated in panels at the Georgetown University Law Center, University College London’s Centre for Law, Economics & Society, and the American Bar Association’s antitrust conferences, among others. At these outreach events, she discussed the Division’s health care matters, including its lawsuit against Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan, and addressed health care issues, such as most-favored-nation clauses and accountable care organizations.

Dr. Scott-Morton pointed to H&R Block/TaxACT and AT&T/T-Mobile as the most memorable and rewarding cases during her tenure thus far as the DAAG. In the Division’s trial to prevent H&R Block from acquiring TaxACT, she assisted in the building of economic evidence to support the Department’s argument and strategized during the trial on how to best present the economic evidence. In the Department’s lawsuit to block AT&T from acquiring T-Mobile, she supervised the economic team as it assembled the evidence to support the Division’s case, managed interactions with expert witnesses and help set the strategy and direction of economic litigation support. Given how clearly the economic analysis showed harm from the proposed transaction to consumers, Dr. Scott-Morton said that preparing for the AT&T trial was very satisfying.

As an academic, Dr. Scott-Morton has built her reputation as an expert in competitive strategy. Her research focuses on empirical studies of competition among firms in areas such as pricing, entry, and product differentiation. She is also a prolific academic whose writings have predominantly focused on the dynamics of competition in the health care industry.

Before joining the faculty of the Yale School of Management, Dr. Scott-Morton previously taught at the University of Chicago’s graduate school of business as assistant professor of economics and at Stanford University’s graduate school of business strategy as assistant professor of strategic management. She received her Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her B.A. from Yale University.

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