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Experimentation in Markets

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  • Bergemann, Dirk
  • Valimaki, Juuso

Abstract

We present a model of entry and exit with Bayesian learning and price competition. A new product of initially unknown quality is introduced in the market, and purchases of the product yield information on its true quality. We assume that the performance of the new product is publicly observable. As agents learn from the experiments of others, informational externalities arise. We determine the Markov Perfect Equilibrium prices and allocations. In a single market, the combination of the informational externalities among the buyers and the strategic pricing by the sellers results in excessive experimentation. If the new product is launched in many distinct markets, the path of sales converges to the efficient path in the limit as the number of markets grows. Copyright 2000 by The Review of Economic Studies Limited

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 67 (2000)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 213-34

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Handle: RePEc:bla:restud:v:67:y:2000:i:2:p:213-34

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  1. Bergemann, Dirk & Valimaki, Juuso, 1996. "Learning and Strategic Pricing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1125-49, September.
  2. Dirk Bergemann & Juuso Valimaki, 1996. "Experimentation in Markets," Discussion Papers 1220, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Dirk Bergemann & Juuso Valimaki, 1997. "Market Diffusion with Two-Sided Learning," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 28(4), pages 773-795, Winter.
  4. Banerjee, Abhijit & Fudenberg, Drew, 2004. "Word-of-mouth learning," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 1-22, January.
  5. Chamley, Christophe & Gale, Douglas, 1994. "Information Revelation and Strategic Delay in a Model of Investment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(5), pages 1065-85, September.
  6. Keller, Godfrey & Rady, Sven, 1999. "Optimal Experimentation in a Changing Environment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(3), pages 475-507, July.
  7. Rothschild, Michael, 1974. "A two-armed bandit theory of market pricing," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 185-202, October.
  8. Kenneth Hendricks & Dan Kovenock, 1989. "Asymmetric Information, Information Externalities, and Efficiency: The Case of Oil Exploration," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 20(2), pages 164-182, Summer.
  9. Patrick Bolton & Christopher Harris, 1999. "Strategic Experimentation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(2), pages 349-374, March.
  10. Rob, Rafael, 1991. "Learning and Capacity Expansion under Demand Uncertainty," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(4), pages 655-75, July.
  11. Felli, Leonardo & Harris, Christopher, 1996. "Learning, Wage Dynamics, and Firm-Specific Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 838-68, August.
  12. McFadden, Daniel L & Train, Kenneth E, 1996. "Consumers' Evaluation of New Products: Learning from Self and Others," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 683-703, August.
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