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Costly Renegotiation in Repeated Bertrand Games

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  • Andersson Ola

    ()
    (Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Wengström Erik

    ()
    (Lund University and University of Copenhagen)

Abstract

This paper extends the concept of weak renegotiation-proof equilibrium (WRP) to allow for costly renegotiation and shows that even small renegotiation costs can have dramatic effects on the set of equilibria. More specifically, the paper analyzes the infinitely repeated Bertrand game. It is shown that for every level of renegotiation cost, there exists a discount factor such that any collusive profit can be supported as an equilibrium outcome. Hence, any arbitrary small renegotiation cost will suffice to facilitate collusive outcomes for sufficiently patient firms. This result stands in stark contrast to the unique pure strategy WRP equilibrium without renegotiation costs, which implies marginal-cost pricing in every period. Moreover, in comparison to the findings of McCutcheon (1997), who states that renegotiation costs have to be substantial to facilitate collusion, this result points to a quite different conclusion.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 10 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (December)
Pages: 1-12

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejtec:v:10:y:2010:i:1:n:51

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  1. McCutcheon, Barbara, 1997. "Do Meetings in Smoke-Filled Rooms Facilitate Collusion?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 330-50, April.
  2. Farrell, Joseph & Maskin, Eric, 1989. "Renegotiation in repeated games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(4), pages 327-360, December.
  3. van Damme,Eric, 1986. "Renegotiation-proof equilibria in repeated Prisoner`s dilemma," Discussion Paper Serie A 84, University of Bonn, Germany.
  4. Kranz, Sebastian & Ohlendorf, Susanne, 2009. "Renegotiation-Proof Relational Contracts with Side Payments," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 259, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  5. David Genesove & Wallace P. Mullin, 2001. "Rules, Communication, and Collusion: Narrative Evidence from the Sugar Institute Case," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 379-398, June.
  6. Asheim, G.B., 1988. "Extending Renegotiation-Proofness To Infinite Horizon Games," Papers 16-88, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration-.
  7. Motta,Massimo, 2004. "Competition Policy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521016919, October.
  8. Blume Andreas, 1994. "Intraplay Communication in Repeated Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 181-211, March.
  9. Damme, E.E.C. van, 1989. "Renegotiation-proof equilibria in repeated prisoners' dilemma," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-154423, Tilburg University.
  10. Bernheim, B. Douglas & Peleg, Bezalel & Whinston, Michael D., 1987. "Coalition-Proof Nash Equilibria I. Concepts," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-12, June.
  11. Aramendia, Miguel & Larrea, Concepcion & Ruiz, Luis, 2005. "Renegotiation in the repeated Cournot model," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 1-19, July.
  12. Andersson, Ola & Wengstrom, Erik, 2007. "A note on renegotiation in repeated Bertrand duopolies," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 95(3), pages 398-401, June.
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