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Refunds and collusion in service industries

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  • Ringbom, Staffan
  • Shy, Oz

Abstract

This paper investigates industry-wide agreements on joint refund policies, and how they influence price competition. We compute the profit of fully-colluding, competing, and semicolluding service providers who offer refunds to those consumers who do not show up at the time of service. Our main findings are that both a monopoly serving all consumer types, and semicollusive service providers offer full refunds. In contrast, competing service providers offer only partial refunds. Finally, refund policies are investigated under moral hazard behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Ringbom, Staffan & Shy, Oz, 2008. "Refunds and collusion in service industries," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 60(6), pages 502-516.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jebusi:v:60:y:2008:i:6:p:502-516
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pascal Courty & Li Hao, 2000. "Sequential Screening," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(4), pages 697-717.
    2. Gale, Ian L & Holmes, Thomas J, 1993. "Advance-Purchase Discounts and Monopoly Allocation of Capacity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 135-146, March.
    3. Miravete, Eugenio J, 1996. "Screening Consumers through Alternative Pricing Mechanisms," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 111-132, March.
    4. Michael Spence, 1977. "Consumer Misperceptions, Product Failure and Producer Liability," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(3), pages 561-572.
    5. Gale, Ian L. & Holmes, Thomas J., 1992. "The efficiency of advance-purchase discounts in the presence of aggregate demand uncertainty," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 413-437, September.
    6. James D. Dana & Jr., 1998. "Advance-Purchase Discounts and Price Discrimination in Competitive Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(2), pages 395-422, April.
    7. Steven A. Matthews & Nicola Persico, 2005. "Information Acquisition and the Excess Refund Puzzle," PIER Working Paper Archive 05-015, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    8. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:13:y:2004:i:1:p:1-7 is not listed on IDEAS
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