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Markets: The Fulton Fish Market

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  • Kathryn Graddy

Abstract

The Fulton Fish Market was a colorful part of the New York City landscape that operated on Fulton Street in Manhattan for over 150 years. In 2005 the market moved from the South Street Seaport in lower Manhattan to Hunts Point in the South Bronx. The Fulton Fish Market--now called The New Fulton Fish Market--is one of the world's largest fish markets, second in size only to Tsukiji, the famous fish market in Tokyo. To economists, it may seem that a large centralized market with well-informed buyers and sellers should also be a very competitive market. But fish is a highly differentiated product. Buyers often wish to examine fish themselves, or have their agents do so. The centralized market performs an important function in matching fish to buyers. The high level of product differentiation and the institutional structure in the Fulton fish market can lead to patterns of behavior that suggest imperfect competition and a segmented market. At times in the past, the repeated nature of price setting and extensive knowledge of the sellers may have created the basis for tacit collusion and allowed the dealers to gather economic rents by exploiting the different elasticities and buying patterns. Additional economic rents resulted from subsidies. Before reforms in 1995, lax regulation of the market provided fertile ground for organized crime.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.20.2.207
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Volume (Year): 20 (2006)
Issue (Month): 2 (Spring)
Pages: 207-220

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Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:20:y:2006:i:2:p:207-220

Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.20.2.207
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References

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  1. Hardle, Wolfgang & Kirman, Alan, 1995. "Nonclassical demand : A model-free examination of price-quantity relations in the Marseille fish market," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 227-257, May.
  2. Sokbae 'Simon' Lee, 2004. "Endogeneity in quantile regression models: a control function approach," CeMMAP working papers CWP08/04, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  3. Angrist, Joshua D & Graddy, Kathryn & Imbens, Guido W, 2000. "The Interpretation of Instrumental Variables Estimators in Simultaneous Equations Models with an Application to the Demand for Fish," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 499-527, July.
  4. Kathryn Graddy, 1995. "Testing for Imperfect Competition at the Fulton Fish Market," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 26(1), pages 75-92, Spring.
  5. Joshua D. Angrist & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Instrumental Variables and the Search for Identification: From Supply and Demand to Natural Experiments," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 69-85, Fall.
  6. James H. Stock & Francesco Trebbi, 2003. "Retrospectives: Who Invented Instrumental Variable Regression?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 177-194, Summer.
  7. repec:fth:prinin:455 is not listed on IDEAS
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Cited by:
  1. Vignes, Annick & Etienne, Jean-Michel, 2011. "Price formation on the Marseille fish market: Evidence from a network analysis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 50-67.
  2. Kathryn Graddy & George Hall, 2009. "A Dynamic Model of Price Discrimination and Inventory Management at the Fulton Fish Market," NBER Working Papers 15019, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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