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Product Quality and Market Size

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  • Berry, Steven

    (Yale U)

  • Waldfogel, Joel

    (U of Pennsylvania)

Abstract

Do larger markets offer better products? The question has implications both for theories of cities and for theories of market organization. We document that in the restaurant industry, where quality is produced largely with variable costs, the range of qualities on offer increases in market size, with each product maintaining a small market share. In daily newspapers, where quality is produced with fixed costs, the average quality of products increases with market size, but the market does not offer much additional variety as it grows large. These results are consistent with recent IO theories of endogenous product quality and are consistent with theories of cities that place an emphasis on the consumption advantages of cities.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Yale University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1.

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Date of creation: Jan 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:yaleco:1

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  1. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-99, June.
  2. Todd Sinai & Joel Waldfogel, 2003. "Geography and the Internet: Is the Internet a Substitute or a Complement for Cities?," NBER Working Papers 10028, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Edward L. Glaeser, Jed Kolko, and Albert Saiz, 2001. "Consumer city," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(1), pages 27-50, January.
  4. Jeffrey Campbell, 2000. "Market Size Matters," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1225, Econometric Society.
  5. Masahisa Fujita & Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 2001. "The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262561476, December.
  6. Lisa George & Joel Waldfogel, 2000. "Who Benefits Whom in Daily Newspaper Markets?," NBER Working Papers 7944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1991. "The Structure of Local Public Finance and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 774-806, August.
  8. Thomas J. Holmes, 2002. "The role of cities: evidence from the placement of sales offices," Staff Report 298, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  9. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  10. Bresnahan, T.F & Reiss, P.C., 1989. "Entry And Competition In Concentrated Markets," Papers 151, Stanford - Studies in Industry Economics.
  11. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1987. "Product Differentiation and Industrial Structure," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(2), pages 131-46, December.
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