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The Effects of Selling Complements and Substitutes on Consumer Willingness to Pay: Evidence from Laboratory Experiments

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  • Matthew C. Rousu
  • Robert H. Beach
  • Jay R. Corrigan

Abstract

Basic economic theory predicts that a consumer’s willingness to pay for a good is affected by the availability of complements and substitutes. In an auction setting, this theory implies that the presence of complements would increase bid prices for a good, while the presence of substitutes would decrease bid prices for a good. We designed an experiment that allows the calculation of inverse elasticities, the inverse-demand equivalent of conventional price elasticities. Our results show that the availability of complementary and substitute products affects bids in the expected directions. This finding has important implications for researchers who design experimental auctions.

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File URL: http://economics.kenyon.edu/corrigan/publications/Demand%20Curve%20Shifts.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Kenyon College, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0801.

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Date of creation: Jun 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ken:wpaper:0801

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Web page: http://economics.kenyon.edu/
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Related research

Keywords: auctions; complements; consumer demand; demand flexibilities; inverse elasticities; laboratory experiments; substitutes.;

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References

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  1. Matthew C. Rousu & Wallace E. Huffman & Jason F. Shogren & Abebayehu Tegene, 2004. "Estimating the Public Value of Conflicting Information: The Case of Genetically Modified Foods," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 80(1), pages 125-135.
  2. Huffman, Wallace E. & Shogren, Jason F. & Rousu, Matthew C. & Tegene, Abebayehu, 2003. "Consumer Willingness to Pay for Genetically Modified Food Labels in a Market with Diverse Information: Evidence from Experimental Auctions," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 28(03), December.
  3. Elizabeth Hoffman & Dale J. Menkhaus & Dipankar Chakravarti & Ray A. Field & Glen D. Whipple, 1993. "Using Laboratory Experimental Auctions in Marketing Research: A Case Study of New Packaging for Fresh Beef," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 12(3), pages 318-338.
  4. Shogren, Jason F. & Seung Y. Shin & Dermot J. Hayes & James B. Kliebenstein, 1994. "Resolving Differences in Willingness to Pay and Willingness to Accept," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 255-70, March.
  5. Noussair, C. & Robin, S. & Ruffieux, B., 2001. "Do Consumers Not Care about Biotech Foods or Do They Just Not Read the Labels?," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1142, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
  6. Hausman, Jerry A & Taylor, William E, 1981. "Panel Data and Unobservable Individual Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1377-98, November.
  7. Krinsky, Itzhak & Robb, A Leslie, 1986. "On Approximating the Statistical Properties of Elasticities," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(4), pages 715-19, November.
  8. Jay R. Corrigan & Matthew C. Rousu, 2006. "Posted Prices and Bid Affiliation: Evidence from Experimental Auctions," Working Papers 0602, Kenyon College, Department of Economics.
  9. Peter Cramton, 2002. "Spectrum Auctions," Papers of Peter Cramton 01hte, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 16 Jul 2001.
  10. Glenn Harrison & John List, 2004. "Field experiments," Artefactual Field Experiments 00058, The Field Experiments Website.
  11. Charles Noussair & StÈphane Robin & Bernard Ruffieux, 2004. "Do Consumers Really Refuse To Buy Genetically Modified Food?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(492), pages 102-120, 01.
  12. Corrigan, Jay R. & Rousu, Matthew C., 2006. "AJAE Appendix: Posted Prices and Bid Affiliation: Evidence from Experimental Auctions," American Journal of Agricultural Economics Appendices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 88(4), November.
  13. John A. List & Jason F. Shogren, 1999. "Price Information and Bidding Behavior in Repeated Second-Price Auctions," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(4), pages 942-949.
  14. Shogren, Jason F. & Margolis, Michael & Koo, Cannon & List, John A., 2001. "A random nth-price auction," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 46(4), pages 409-421, December.
  15. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Peter Cramton, 1995. "Demand Reduction and Inefficiency in Multi-Unit Auctions," Papers of Peter Cramton 98wpdr, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 22 Jul 2002.
  16. David Lucking-Reiley & John A. List, 2000. "Demand Reduction in Multiunit Auctions: Evidence from a Sportscard Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 961-972, September.
  17. Roosen, Jutta & Fox, John A. & Hennessy, David A. & Schreiber, Alan, 1998. "Consumers' Valuation Of Insecticide Use Restrictions: An Application To Apples," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 23(02), December.
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