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Consumer optimism and price discrimination

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Author Info

  • Eliaz, Kfir

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Brown University)

  • Spiegler, Ran

    ()
    (Department of Economics, University College London)

Abstract

We study monopolistic design of a menu of non-linear tariffs when consumers have biased prior beliefs regarding their future preferences. In our model, consumers are "optimistic'' if their prior belief assigns too much weight to states of nature characterized by large gains from trade. A consumer's degree of optimism is his private information, and the monopolist employs the menu of non-linear tariffs to screen it. We characterize the optimal menu and show that the existence of non-common priors has significant qualitative implications for price discrimination and ex-post inefficiency. Finally, the characterization enables us to interpret aspects of real-life menus of non-linear tariffs.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Econometric Society in its journal Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 3 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:the:publsh:326

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Web page: http://econtheory.org

Related research

Keywords: contracts; speculative trade; screening; non-common priors; mechanism-design; optimism; three-part tariffs;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Michele Piccione & Ran Spiegler, 2010. "Price Competition under Limited Comparability," Levine's Working Paper Archive 661465000000001143, David K. Levine.
  2. Eliaz, Kfir & Spiegler, Ran, 2006. "Consideration Sets and Competitive Marketing," MPRA Paper 21434, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 03 Sep 2009.
  3. Inderst, Roman & Peitz, Martin, 2012. "Informing consumers about their own preferences," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 417-428.
  4. Michael D. Grubb, 2009. "Selling to Overconfident Consumers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1770-1807, December.
  5. Natalia Shestakova, 2010. "Overcoming Consumer Biases in the Choice of Pricing Schemes: A Lab Experiment," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp418, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  6. Natalia Shestakova, 2010. "Pricing Scheme Choice: How Process Affects Outcome," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp411, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  7. Anja Sautmann, 2013. "Contracts for Agents with Biased Beliefs: Some Theory and an Experiment," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 124-56, August.
  8. Rosato, Antonio, 2013. "Selling Substitute Goods to Loss-Averse Consumers: Limited Availability, Bargains and Rip-offs," MPRA Paper 47168, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Grubb, Michael D., 2012. "Dynamic nonlinear pricing: Biased expectations, inattention, and bill shock," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 287-290.
  10. Stephen G. Leider & Özge Sahin, 2012. "Contracts, Biases and Consumption of Access Services," CESifo Working Paper Series 3698, CESifo Group Munich.
  11. Daniel Gottlieb & Kent Smetters, 2012. "Narrow Framing and Life Insurance," NBER Working Papers 18601, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Eliaz, Kfir & Spiegler, Ran, 2009. "Bargaining over bets," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 78-97, May.

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