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A dynamic model of Bertrand competition with entry


  • Elberfeld, Walter
  • Wolfstetter, Elmar


This paper analyzes a simple, repeated game of simultaneous entry and pricing. We report a surprising property of the symmetric equilibrium solution: If the number of potential competitors is increased above two, the market breaks down with higher probability, and the competitive outcome becomes less likely. More potential competition lowers welfare - another Bertrand paradox. The model can also be applied to auctions to explore whether a revenue maximizing auctioneer should restrict the number of bidders if bidder participation is costly.
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Suggested Citation

  • Elberfeld, Walter & Wolfstetter, Elmar, 1999. "A dynamic model of Bertrand competition with entry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 513-525, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:indorg:v:17:y:1999:i:4:p:513-525

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. L. Wade, 1988. "Review," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 58(1), pages 99-100, July.
    2. Wolfstetter, Elmar, 1996. " Auctions: An Introduction," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(4), pages 367-420, December.
    3. Dasgupta, P. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1988. "Potential competition, actual competition, and economic welfare," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 569-577, March.
    4. Roger Sherman & Thomas D. Willett, 1967. "Potential Entrants Discourage Entry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 400-400.
    5. McAfee, R. Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions with a stochastic number of bidders," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 1-19, October.
    6. Posner, Richard A, 1975. "The Social Costs of Monopoly and Regulation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(4), pages 807-827, August.
    7. Edward L. Millner & Michael D. Pratt & Robert J. Reilly, 1990. "Contestability in Real-Time Experimental Flow Markets," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(4), pages 584-599, Winter.
    8. Sharkey, William W. & Sibley, David S., 1993. "A Bertrand model of pricing and entry," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 199-206.
    9. Joseph Farrell, 1987. "Cheap Talk, Coordination, and Entry," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(1), pages 34-39, Spring.
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    Cited by:

    1. Toolsema, Linda A., 2003. "Having more potential raiders weakens the takeover threat," Research Report 03F16, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
    2. Israel J. Hernández & Elena Huergo Orejas, 2004. "Entrada y Competencia en los Servicios de Telecomunicaciones," Documentos de Trabajo del ICAE 0404, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Instituto Complutense de Análisis Económico.
    3. Konrad, Kai A. & Kovenock, Dan, 2012. "The lifeboat problem," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 552-559.
    4. Toolsema, Linda A., 2003. "Having more potential raiders weakens the takeover threat," CCSO Working Papers 200304, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
    5. Janssen, Maarten & Rasmusen, Eric, 2002. "Bertrand Competition under Uncertainty," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 11-21, March.
    6. Fan, Cuihong & Wolfstetter, Elmar, 2008. "Procurement with costly bidding, optimal shortlisting, and rebates," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 98(3), pages 327-334, March.
    7. Kaplan, Todd & Sela, Aner, 2003. "Auctions with Private Entry Costs," CEPR Discussion Papers 4080, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. İlke Onur & Rasim Özcan & Bedri Taş, 2012. "Public Procurement Auctions and Competition in Turkey," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 40(3), pages 207-223, May.
    9. Vicki Knoblauch, 2002. "A Comparison of Two-Market Bertrand Duopoly and Two-Market Cournot Duopoly," Working papers 2002-14, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    10. Kofi Nti, 2000. "Potential competition and coordination in a market-entry game," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 71(2), pages 149-165, June.
    11. Toolsema, Linda A., 2007. "Having more potential raiders weakens the takeover threat," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 62(4), pages 670-685, April.
    12. Thomas, Charles J., 2002. "The effect of asymmetric entry costs on Bertrand competition," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 589-609, May.
    13. repec:dgr:rugccs:200304 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. repec:dgr:rugsom:03f16 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Bertomeu, Jeremy, 2009. "Endogenous shakeouts," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 435-440, May.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection


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