Reciprocity, inequity-aversion, and oligopolistic competition
AbstractThis paper extends the Cournot and Bertrand models of strategic interaction between firms by assuming that managers are not only profit maximizers, but also have preferences for reciprocity or are averse to inequity. A reciprocal manager responds to unkind behavior of rivals with unkind actions, while at the same time, it responds to kind behavior of rivals with kind actions. An inequity averse manager likes to reduce the difference between own profits and the rivals’ profits. The paper finds that if firms with reciprocal managers compete à la Cournot, then they may be able to sustain “collusive” outcomes under a constructive reciprocity equilibrium. By contrast, Stackelberg warfare may emerge under a destructive reciprocity equilibrium. If there is Cournot competition between firms and their managers are averse to advantageous (disadvantageous) inequity, then firms are better (worse) off than if managers only care about maximizing profits. If firms compete à la Bertrand, then only under very restrictive conditions will managers’ preferences for reciprocity or inequity aversion have an impact on equilibrium outcomes.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 3143.
Date of creation: 17 May 2006
Date of revision: 14 Apr 2007
Reciprocity; Inequity Aversion; Cournot; Bertrand;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure and Pricing - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
- L21 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Business Objectives of the Firm
- L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-05-12 (All new papers)
- NEP-BEC-2007-05-12 (Business Economics)
- NEP-COM-2007-05-12 (Industrial Competition)
- NEP-IND-2007-05-12 (Industrial Organization)
- NEP-MIC-2007-05-12 (Microeconomics)
- NEP-UPT-2007-05-12 (Utility Models & Prospect Theory)
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