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Competition for Attention

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  • Pedro Bordalo
  • Nicola Gennaioli
  • Andrei Shleifer

Abstract

We present a model of market competition and product differentiation in which consumers' attention is drawn to the products' most salient attributes. Firms compete for consumer attention via their choices of quality and price. With salience, strategic positioning of each product affects how all other products are perceived. With this attention externality, depending on the cost of producing quality some markets exhibit “commoditized” price salient equilibria, while others exhibit “de-commoditized” quality salient equilibria. When the cost of producing quality changes, innovation can lead to a radical change in markets. In the context of financial innovation, the model generates the well documented phenomenon of “reaching for yield”.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19076.

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Date of creation: May 2013
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19076

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References

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  1. Eliaz, Kfir & Spiegler, Ran, 2006. "Consideration Sets and Competitive Marketing," MPRA Paper 21434, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 03 Sep 2009.
  2. Brad M. Barber & Terrance Odean, 2008. "All That Glitters: The Effect of Attention and News on the Buying Behavior of Individual and Institutional Investors," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(2), pages 785-818, April.
  3. Michele Piccione & Ran Spiegler, 2010. "Price Competition under Limited Comparability," Levine's Working Paper Archive 661465000000001143, David K. Levine.
  4. Spiegler, Ran & Eliaz, Kfir, 2011. "On the strategic use of attention grabbers," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 6(1), January.
  5. Simon P. Anderston & Andre de Palma, 1991. "Multiproduct Firms: A Nested Logit Approach," Discussion Papers 973, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  6. Laibson, David I. & Gabaix, Xavier, 2006. "Shrouded Attributes, Consumer Myopia, and Information Suppression in Competitive Markets," Scholarly Articles 4554333, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Andreas M. Hefti, 2011. "Attention competition," ECON - Working Papers 028, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
  8. Stefano Dellavigna & Joshua M. Pollet, 2009. "Investor Inattention and Friday Earnings Announcements," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(2), pages 709-749, 04.
  9. Alisdair McKay & Filip Matejka, 2011. "Simple Market Equilibria with Rationally Inattentive Consumers," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2011-025, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  10. Spiegler, Ran, 2011. "Bounded Rationality and Industrial Organization," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195398717.
  11. Azar, Ofer H., 2008. "The effect of relative thinking on firm strategy and market outcomes: A location differentiation model with endogenous transportation costs," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(5), pages 684-697, November.
  12. Persson, Petra, 2013. "Attention Manipulation and Information Overload," Working Paper Series 995, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  13. 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. James M. Sallee, 2013. "Rational Inattention and Energy Efficiency," NBER Working Papers 19545, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Geoffroy De Clippel & Kfir Eliaz & Kareen Rozen, 2013. "Competing for Consumer Inattention," Levine's Working Paper Archive 786969000000000765, David K. Levine.

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