The long-run benefits of chaos to oligopolistic firms
Conventional economic beliefs that 'equilibrium' is better than 'disequilibrium' and 'stability' is better than 'fluctuation' are challenged with a heterogeneous oligopolistic model that consists of a naive firm and a group of sophisticated firms. The naive firm is assumed to adopt a simple Cobweb strategy while the sophisticate firms, who command all market information, form a collusion and best respond the naive firm's current action. When the market equilibrium is unstable, the naive firm is able to turn an explosively diverging market into a bounded but chaotic one by adopting simultaneously a cautious adjustment strategy (that is, limiting the growth rate of output). There exists an upper-bound such that as long as the growth rate does not exceed this bound, the average profits made by all oligopolistic firms are higher than their respective equilibrium profits. Moreover, the average economic surplus can also be higher than the equilibrium surplus. In this sense, chaos is beneficial not only to all oligopolistic firms but also to the economy as a whole.
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