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Dynamics and equilibria under incremental horizontal differentiation on the Salop circle

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  • Vermeulen, Ben
  • La Poutré, Han
  • de Kok, Ton
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    Abstract

    We study product differentiation on a Salop circle when firms relocate incrementally due to bounded rationality. We prove that, under common assumptions on demand, firms relocate only when two or more firms target the same niche. In any other case, there is no incentive for any firm to relocate incrementally. We prove that all distributions in which firms are sufficiently far apart in product space are unstable Nash equilibria. We prove, in particular, that the classical equidistant distribution is an unstable Nash equilibrium that cannot emerge from another distribution. However, we show that if each firm is engaged in head-on rivalry with one other competitor, the industry converges to an ’equidistantesque’ equilibrium of clusters of rivals.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 51449.

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    Date of creation: Apr 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:51449

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    Related research

    Keywords: product differentiation; bounded rationality; Salop circle; equidistant equilibrium; maximum differentiation;

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