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Competitive behavior in market games: Evidence and theory

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  • Duffy, John
  • Matros, Alexander
  • Temzelides, Ted

Abstract

We explore whether competitive outcomes arise in an experimental implementation of a market game, introduced by Shubik (1973) [21]. Market games obtain Pareto inferior (strict) Nash equilibria, in which some or possibly all markets are closed. We find that subjects do not coordinate on autarkic Nash equilibria, but favor more efficient Nash equilibria in which all markets are open. As the number of subjects participating in the market game increases, the Nash equilibrium they achieve approximates the associated competitive equilibrium of the underlying economy. Motivated by these findings, we provide a theoretical argument for why evolutionary forces can lead to competitive outcomes in market games.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Theory.

Volume (Year): 146 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 1437-1463

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jetheo:v:146:y:2011:i:4:p:1437-1463

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622869

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Keywords: Market games Full Nash equilibrium Market power Competition Experimental economics Evolutionary stability;

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References

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  1. Armen A. Alchian, 1950. "Uncertainty, Evolution, and Economic Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58, pages 211.
  2. Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-55, December.
  3. Fernando Vega-Redondo, 1997. "The Evolution of Walrasian Behavior," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(2), pages 375-384, March.
  4. Ghosal, Sayantan & Morelli, Massimo, 2004. "Retrading in market games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 151-181, March.
  5. Friedman, Daniel & Ostroy, Joseph, 1995. "Competitivity in Auction Markets: An Experimental and Theoretical Investigation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(428), pages 22-53, January.
  6. Gale, Douglas M, 1986. "Bargaining and Competition Part I: Characterization," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(4), pages 785-806, July.
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  8. Postlewaite, A & Schmeidler, David, 1978. "Approximate Efficiency of Non-Walrasian Nash Equilibria," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 127-35, January.
  9. Peck, James & Shell, Karl & Spear, Stephen E., 1992. "The market game: existence and structure of equilibrium," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 271-299.
  10. Pradeep Dubey & Martin Shubik, 1976. "A Closed Economic System with Production and Exchange Modelled as a Game of Strategy," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 429, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  11. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  12. Jorgen W. Weibull, 1997. "Evolutionary Game Theory," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262731215.
  13. Holt, Charles A & Langan, Loren W & Villamil, Anne P, 1986. "Market Power in Oral Double Auctions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 24(1), pages 107-23, January.
  14. Peck, James & Shell, Karl, 1990. "Liquid markets and competition," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 362-377, December.
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  16. Timothy N. Cason & Daniel Friedman, 1997. "Price Formation in Single Call Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(2), pages 311-346, March.
  17. Mark A. Satterthwaite & Steven R. Williams, 2002. "The Optimality of a Simple Market Mechanism," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(5), pages 1841-1863, September.
  18. Dubey, Pradeep & Shubik, Martin, 1978. "A theory of money and financial institutions. 28. The non-cooperative equilibria of a closed trading economy with market supply and bidding strategies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 1-20, February.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Peter Duersch & Jörg Oechssler & Burkhard Schipper, 2012. "Pure strategy equilibria in symmetric two-player zero-sum games," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 553-564, August.
  2. Dmitry Levando, 2012. "A Survey Of Strategic Market Games," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 57(194), pages 63-106, July - Se.
  3. Breton, Régis & Gobillard, Bertrand, 2011. "Robustness of equilibrium price dispersion in finite market games," TSE Working Papers 11-308, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
  4. Peter Duersch & Joerg Oechssler & Burkhard C. Schipper, 2010. "Pure Saddle Points and Symmetric Relative Payoff Games," Working Papers 104, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  5. Vasin, A., 2010. "Evolutionary Game Theory and Economics. Part 2. Stability of Equilibria. Special Features of Human Behavior Evolution," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, issue 5, pages 10-27.

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