Countervailing Power? Collusion in Markets with Decentralized Trade
AbstractWe consider the collective incentives of buyers and sellers to form cartels in markets where trade is realized through decentralized pairwise bargaining. Cartels are coalitions of buyers or sellers that limit market participation and compensate inactive members for abstaining from trade. In a stable market outcome, cartels set Nash equilibrium quantities and cartel memberships are immune to defections. We prove that the set of stable market outcomes is non-empty and we provide its full characterization. Stable market outcomes are of two types: (i) at least one cartel actively restrains trade and the levels of market participation are balanced, or (ii) only one cartel, eventually the cartel that forms on the long side of the market, is active and it reduces trade slightly below the opponent's.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC) in its series UFAE and IAE Working Papers with number 540.02.
Date of creation: 30 Sep 2002
Date of revision:
Decentralized Trade; pairwise bargaining; bilateral cartel fornation; cartel stability; countervailing power;
Other versions of this item:
- Nadia Burani & Clara Ponsati, 2011. "Countervailing power? Collusion in markets with decentralized trade," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 91-120, June.
- C78 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Bargaining Theory; Matching Theory
- D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure and Pricing - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
- L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
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