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Can cost increases increase competition? Asymmetric information and equilibrium prices

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  • Giovanni Dell'Ariccia
  • Robert Marquez

Abstract

We present an analysis of competition under asymmetric information where prices react asymmetrically to changes in firms' marginal costs. When one firm has private information about some customers, an increase in an uninformed firm's marginal cost leads to a price increase, as usual. However, an increase in the informed firm's marginal cost causes the equilibrium price to fall by improving the distribution of customers served by the uninformed firm. The model applies to settings where information asymmetries are important determinants of competition, such as credit, insurance, labor markets, or for the sale of goods where repeat business is important. Copyright (c)2008, RAND.

Suggested Citation

  • Giovanni Dell'Ariccia & Robert Marquez, 2008. "Can cost increases increase competition? Asymmetric information and equilibrium prices," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 39(1), pages 144-162.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:randje:v:39:y:2008:i:1:p:144-162
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    Cited by:

    1. de Blas, Beatriz & Russ, Katheryn Niles, 2013. "All banks great, small, and global: Loan pricing and foreign competition," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 4-24.

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