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Product Variety in Religious Markets

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  • Brooks Hull
  • Frederick Bold
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    Abstract

    This paper analyzes the relationship between religious market product variety and church membership. We find that denominational variety is negatively associated with the total level of church membership in U.S. counties. This result appears 10 contradict the standard religious product variety model. Our data are consistent with a more general view of markets that incorporates the cost to consumers of product variety. Where product variety has significant costs, an increase in variety may reduce total market penetration. The paper suggests market characteristics that might give rise to this situation, characteristics present in the religion market.

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    File URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00346769800000001
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Review of Social Economy.

    Volume (Year): 56 (1998)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 1-19

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:rsocec:v:56:y:1998:i:1:p:1-19

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    Web page: http://www.tandfonline.com/RRSE20

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    Related research

    Keywords: religion; church; product variety; concentration;

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    Cited by:
    1. Pedro Pita Barros & Nuno Garoupa, 2002. "An Economic Theory Of Church Strictness," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(481), pages 559-576, July.
    2. Panu Poutvaara & Andreas Wagener, 2010. "The invisible hand plays dice: multiple equilibria in sects markets," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 145(3), pages 483-502, December.
    3. Lipford, Jody W. & Tollison, Robert D., 2003. "Religious participation and income," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 249-260, June.
    4. Rupasingha, Anil & Chilton, John b., 2009. "Religious adherence and county economic growth in the US," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 438-450, October.
    5. Cameron, Samuel, 1999. "Faith, frequency, and the allocation of time: a micro level study of religious capital and participation," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 439-456.

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