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Multi‐product Firms and Product Variety

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  • Ramon Caminal
  • Lluís M. Granero

Abstract

The goal of this paper is to study the role of multi-product firms in the market provision of product variety. The analysis is conducted using the spokes model of non-localized competition proposed by Chen and Riordan (2007). Firstly, we show that multi-product firms are at a competitive disadvantage vis-a-vis single-product firms and can only emerge if economies of scope are sufficiently strong. Secondly, under duopoly product variety may be higher or lower with respect to both the first best and the monopolistically competitive equilibrium. However, within a relevant range of parameter values duopolists drastically restrict their product range in order to relax price competition, and as a result product variety is far below the efficient level.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by London School of Economics and Political Science in its journal Economica.

Volume (Year): 79 (2012)
Issue (Month): 314 (04)
Pages: 303-328

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Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:79:y:2012:i:314:p:303-328

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References

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  1. Besanko, David & Perry, Martin K & Spady, Richard H, 1990. "The Logit Model of Monopolistic Competition: Brand Diversity," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(4), pages 397-415, June.
  2. James Brander & Jonathan Eaton, 1982. "Product Line Rivalry," Working Papers 519, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
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  4. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Takatoshi Tabuchi & Jacques-Francois Tissse, 1999. "Agglomeration and Trade Revisited," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-65, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
  5. Simon P. Anderson & André de Palma, 2003. "Market Performance With Multiproduct Firms," Virginia Economics Online Papers 357, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
  6. Peter Neary & Carsten Eckel, 2006. "Multi-Product Firms and Flexible Manufacturing in the Global Economy," Economics Series Working Papers 292, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  7. Steven C. Salop, 1979. "Monopolistic Competition with Outside Goods," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 141-156, Spring.
  8. repec:bla:restud:v:77:y:2010:i:1:p:188-217 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Allanson, Paul & Montagna, Catia, 2005. "Multiproduct firms and market structure: An explorative application to the product life cycle," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(7-8), pages 587-597, September.
  10. Minniti Antonio, 2006. "Multi-product Firms, R&D, and Growth," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(3), pages 1-46, December.
  11. Volker Nocke & Stephen Yeaple, 2006. "Globalization and Endogenous Firm Scope," PIER Working Paper Archive 06-015, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  12. Richard Schmalensee, 1978. "Entry Deterrence in the Ready-to-Eat Breakfast Cereal Industry," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 9(2), pages 305-327, Autumn.
  13. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  14. Jiandong Ju, 2003. "Oligopolistic Competition, Technology Innovation, and Multiproduct Firms," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(2), pages 346-359, 05.
  15. Robert Feenstra & Hong Ma, 2007. "Optimal Choice of Product Scope for Multiproduct Firms under Monopolistic Competition," NBER Working Papers 13703, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Bonanno, Giacomo, 1987. "Location Choice, Product Proliferation and Entry Deterrence," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(1), pages 37-45, January.
  17. Simon P. Anderson & Andr� Palma, 2006. "MARKET PERFORMANCE WITH MULTIPRODUCT FIRMS -super-* ," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(1), pages 95-124, 03.
  18. Michael H. Riordan & Yongmin Chen, 2005. "Price and Variety in the Spokes Model," Discussion Papers 0405-20, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  19. Spence, Michael, 1976. "Product Selection, Fixed Costs, and Monopolistic Competition," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(2), pages 217-35, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Granero, Lluís M., 2013. "Most-favored-customer pricing, product variety, and welfare," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(3), pages 579-582.
  2. Ramon Caminal, 2009. "Markets and linguistic diversity," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 781.09, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  3. Emilie Dargaud & Carlo Reggiani, . "Horizontal Mergers in the Spokes Model," Discussion Papers 09/12, Department of Economics, University of York.
  4. Emilie Dargaud & Carlo Reggiani, 2012. "On the Price Effects of Horizontal Mergers : A Theoretical Interpretation," Working Papers halshs-00717467, HAL.
  5. Carlo Reggiani, 2012. "Spatial price discrimination in the spokes model," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 1207, Economics, The University of Manchester.

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