Damaged durable goods
A durable-goods monopolist may use quality degradation as a commitment not to lower price in the future. The introduction of damaged goods expedites low-valuation consumers’ future demands, and helps the firm to mitigate the Coasian time-consistency problem. In such a case, damaged goods are more likely to be observed relative to the static setting where only the price-discrimination aspect of quality degradation is in effect. However, it is more likely to reduce welfare by inducing low- valuation buyers to buy the low-quality good early rather than to wait and buy the high-quality good later. So, quality degradation of durable goods is more likely to occur but less promising to the society, relative to the case of non-durable goods where damaged goods are rarely observed but more likely to be Pareto-improving.
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Volume (Year): 37 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (03)
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