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The Economics of Collusion: Cartels and Bidding Rings

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Author Info

  • Marshall, Robert C.

    ()
    (Pennsylvania State University)

  • Marx, Leslie M.

    ()
    (Fuqua School of Business at Duke University)

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    Abstract

    Explicit collusion is an agreement among competitors to suppress rivalry that relies on interfirm communication and/or transfers. Rivalry between competitors erodes profits; the suppression of rivalry through collusion is one avenue by which firms can enhance profits. Many cartels and bidding rings function for years in a stable and peaceful manner despite the illegality of their agreements and incentives for deviation by their members. In The Economics of Collusion, Robert Marshall and Leslie Marx offer an examination of collusive behavior: what it is, why it is profitable, how it is implemented, and how it might be detected. Marshall and Marx, who have studied collusion extensively for two decades, begin with three narratives: the organization and implementation of a cartel, the organization and implementation of a bidding ring, and a parent company’s efforts to detect collusion by its divisions. These accounts--fictitious, but rooted in the inner workings and details from actual cases--offer a novel and engaging way for the reader to understand the basics of collusive behavior. The narratives are followed by detailed economic analyses of cartels, bidding rings, and detection. The narratives offer an engaging entrée to the more rigorous economic discussion that follows. The book is accessible to any reader who understands basic economic reasoning. Mathematical material is flagged with asterisks.

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    Bibliographic Info

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    This book is provided by The MIT Press in its series MIT Press Books with number 0262017326 and published in 2012.

    Volume: 1
    Edition: 1
    ISBN: 0-262-01732-6
    Handle: RePEc:mtp:titles:0262017326

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu

    Related research

    Keywords: econometrics; collusion; statistics; management;

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    Cited by:
    1. Andrei Y. Shastitko & Svetlana V. Golovanova, 2014. "Collusion in markets characterized by one large buyer: lessons learned from an antitrust case in Russia," HSE Working papers WP BRP 49/EC/2014, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    2. Salvatore Piccolo & Giancarlo Spagnolo, 2014. "Debt, Managers and Cartels," CSEF Working Papers 365, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
    3. Saitis, Athanasios, 2013. "Kartellbekämpfung und interne Kartellstrukturen: Ein netzwerktheoretischer Ansatz," FZID Discussion Papers 85-2013, University of Hohenheim, Center for Research on Innovation and Services (FZID).

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