Quarterly newsletter from the Office of the Chief Economist

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United States Patent and Trademark Office


Quarterly Newsletter Fall 2023

Latest updates from the Office of the Chief Economist (OCE):


Diagnosing COVID-19: A perspective from U.S. patenting activity

OCE recently released a report finding that small companies and universities led the way in COVID-19 diagnostic patent filings at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Nearly 71% of these filings were from small entities, including 64% of filings from companies and 82% from universities, research institutes, and hospitals. Financial support from the U.S. Government helped spur these inventions—about 10.7% of all COVID-19 diagnostic filings had government support, with the U.S. National Institutes of Health leading other agencies.

Competitive dynamism in nascent markets: Trademarks and superstar firm entry in the metaverse

OCE released a new working paper that studies the firms filing for trademarks related to the early metaverse, and documents the impact of Facebook’s 2014 acquisition of Oculus on other firms’ metaverse activities. The analysis finds, among other things, that Facebook’s entry led to a 10% decline in new metaverse trademarks.


PatentsView data update

PatentsView updated their data through June 29, 2023. For more information, see patentsview.org/release-notes.

OCE research dataset updates

OCE updated their annual research datasets for 2023:

  • The Patent Examination Research Dataset (PatEx) has been updated to contain information on all patent applications made public through June 2023. The update now includes new data that has not been made available in previous years, including information on patent applicants and examination-related documents. An addendum to the technical documentation describes these new data files.
  • The updated Trademark Case Files Dataset now contains detailed information on 12.1 million trademark applications filed with—or registrations issued by—the USPTO between January 1870 and February 2023.
  • The Trademark Assignments Dataset has also been updated, now containing assignments and other transactions recorded at the USPTO between March 1952 and January 2023.
  • Finally, the newly released Patent Assignments Dataset now contains detailed information on 10 million patent assignments and other transactions recorded at the USPTO since 1970, involving roughly 17.8 million patents and patent applications.


Chief Economist Speaker Series

Tim Simcoe (Boston University) presented his paper, "Innovation and Appropriability: Revisiting the Role of Intellectual Property,” during the Chief Economist Speaker Series. More information on the speakers is available on our events page.

Past event: EPIP 2023 Annual Conference

OCE sponsored the 2023 European Policy for Intellectual Property (EPIP) Ph.D workshop and the Chief Economist panel. The workshop introduced Ph.D students to the latest theory and data on the law and economics of intellectual property (IP), and gave them opportunities to receive career advice and obtain feedback on their work. The panel discussed the role of IP in addressing global challenges.

Additional updates are available at www.uspto.gov/economics.

Thank you,
The OCE team

Office of the Chief Economist, Office of Policy and International Affairs
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
Department of Commerce
Phone: 571-272-6900

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