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Durable Goods, Coasian Dynamics, and Uncertainty: Theory and Experiments

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  • Timothy N. Cason
  • Tridib Sharma

Abstract

This paper presents a model in which a durable goods monopolist sells a product to two buyers. Each buyer is privately informed about his own valuation. Thus all players are imperfectly informed about market demand. We study the monopolist's pricing behavior as players' uncertainty regarding demand vanishes in the limit. In the limit, players are perfectly informed about the downward-sloping demand. We show that in all games belonging to a fixed and open neighborhood of the limit game there exists a generically unique equilibrium outcome that exhibits Coasian dynamics and in which play lasts for at most two periods. A laboratory experiment shows that, consistent with our theory, outcomes in the Certain and Uncertain Demand treatments are the same. Median opening prices in both treatments are roughly at the level predicted and considerably below the monopoly price. Consistent with Coasian dynamics, these prices are lower for higher discount factors. Demand withholding, however, leads to more trading periods than predicted.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 109 (2001)
Issue (Month): 6 (December)
Pages: 1311-1354

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:109:y:2001:i:6:p:1311-1354

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Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE/

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Cited by:
  1. Bayer, Ralph-C., 2010. "Intertemporal price discrimination and competition," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 273-293, February.
  2. Ennio Bilancini & Leonardo Boncinelli, 2014. "Dynamic Adverse Selection and the Supply Size," Center for Economic Research (RECent) 099, University of Modena and Reggio E., Dept. of Economics.
  3. José Luis Lima R. & Javier Nuñez E., 2004. "Experimental Analysis of the Reputational Incentives in a Self Regulated Organization," Econometric Society 2004 Latin American Meetings 194, Econometric Society.

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