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Optimal pricing and quality choice when investment in quality is irreversible

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  • Enrico Pennings

Abstract

This paper examines the price and quality choice by a single product risk-neutral monopolist who can delay irreversible investments required for market entry. It is shown that the price and quality she chooses at entry increase with uncertainty about the size of future demand. As opposed to a myopic monopolist she provides a quality that is socially optimal, but the moment at which she invests will be later than socially optimal. In a Stackelberg leader-follower game the leader pre-commits immediately regardless of the level of market uncertainty and may opt for the lower quality good rather than the higher quality good when market uncertainty is high.

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Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 206.

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Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:206

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  1. Rashid, Salim, 1988. "Quality in Contestable Markets: A Historical Problem?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(1), pages 245-49, February.
  2. Aoki, Reiko & Prusa, Thomas J., 1997. "Sequential versus simultaneous choice with endogenous quality," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 103-121, February.
  3. Nalin Kulatilaka & Enrico C. Perotti, 1998. "Strategic Growth Options," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(8), pages 1021-1031, August.
  4. McDonald, Robert & Siegel, Daniel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-27, November.
  5. Jaskold Gabszewicz, J. & Thisse, J. -F., 1979. "Price competition, quality and income disparities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 340-359, June.
  6. Spencer, Barbara J. & Brander, James A., 1992. "Pre-commitment and flexibility : Applications to oligopoly theory," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1601-1626, December.
  7. Giovanni Maggi, 1996. "Endogenous Leadership in a New Market," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(4), pages 641-659, Winter.
  8. Boom, Anette, 1995. "Asymmetric International Minimum Quality Standards and Vertical Differentiation," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(1), pages 101-19, March.
  9. Sadanand, Asha & Sadanand, Venkatraman, 1996. "Firm Scale and the Endogenous Timing of Entry: a Choice between Commitment and Flexibility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 516-530, August.
  10. Motta, Massimo, 1993. "Endogenous Quality Choice: Price vs. Quantity Competition," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(2), pages 113-31, June.
  11. Bart Lambrecht & William Perraudin, 1996. "Real Options and Preemption," Archive Working Papers 026, Birkbeck, Department of Economics, Mathematics & Statistics.
  12. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1982. "Relaxing Price Competition through Product Differentiation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(1), pages 3-13, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Emanuele Bacchiega, 2007. "Wage bargaining and vertical differentiation," International Review of Economics, Springer, vol. 54(1), pages 35-52, March.
  2. Lewis Evans & Graeme Guthrie & Neil Quigley, 2012. "Contemporary Microeconomic Foundations for the Structure and Management of the Public Sector," Treasury Working Paper Series 12/01, New Zealand Treasury.
  3. Tamini, Lota D., 2012. "Optimal quality choice under uncertainty on market development," MPRA Paper 40845, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Tamini, Lota Dabio, 2012. "Optimal quality choice under uncertainty on market development," Working Papers 148589, Structure and Performance of Agriculture and Agri-products Industry (SPAA).
  5. Vincenzo Atella & Jay Bhattacharya & Lorenzo Carbonari, 2008. "Pharmaceutical Industry, Drug Quality and Regulation: Evidence from US and Italy," NBER Working Papers 14567, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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