IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/inm/ormnsc/v55y2009i10p1623-1637.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

An Empirical Analysis of Scarcity Strategies in the Automobile Industry

Author

Listed:
  • Subramanian Balachander

    () (Krannert Graduate School of Management, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907)

  • Yan Liu

    () (Krannert Graduate School of Management, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907)

  • Axel Stock

    () (College of Business Administration, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida 32816)

Abstract

Recent product introductions such as the Xbox 360, Sony Playstation 2, and PT Cruiser have been characterized by shortage of these products. Some experts have suggested that such scarcity can be a deliberate strategy for making the product more desirable. In this paper, we empirically examine the relationship between introductory inventory levels and consumer preference in the U.S. automobile industry and show that relative scarcity of a car at the time of introduction is associated with higher consumer preference for the product. Furthermore, we perform an empirical test of alternative theories about the rationale for introductory product scarcity. Specifically, we consider two theories of supplier-induced scarcity, namely the buying frenzy theory and the signaling theory, and an alternative theory that suggests that demand uncertainty causes introductory product scarcity. We find more support for the signaling theory of supplier-induced scarcity than the buying frenzy theory or the demand uncertainty theory in our analysis of the automobile market.

Suggested Citation

  • Subramanian Balachander & Yan Liu & Axel Stock, 2009. "An Empirical Analysis of Scarcity Strategies in the Automobile Industry," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(10), pages 1623-1637, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:55:y:2009:i:10:p:1623-1637
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.1090.1056
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kyle Bagwell & Garey Ramey, 1988. "Advertising and Limit Pricing," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(1), pages 59-71, Spring.
    2. K. Sudhir, 2001. "Competitive Pricing Behavior in the Auto Market: A Structural Analysis," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(1), pages 42-60, January.
    3. Becker, Gary S, 1991. "A Note on Restaurant Pricing and Other Examples of Social Influences on Price," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(5), pages 1109-1116, October.
    4. Newey, Whitney K., 1984. "A method of moments interpretation of sequential estimators," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 14(2-3), pages 201-206.
    5. Frank M. Bass, 1969. "A New Product Growth for Model Consumer Durables," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 15(5), pages 215-227, January.
    6. Axel Stock & Subramanian Balachander, 2005. "The Making of a "Hot Product": A Signaling Explanation of Marketers' Scarcity Strategy," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(8), pages 1181-1192, August.
    7. Ajay Kalra & Surendra Rajiv & Kannan Srinivasan, 1998. "Response to Competitive Entry: A Rationale for Delayed Defensive Reaction," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 17(4), pages 380-405.
    8. Pradeep Chintagunta & Jean-Pierre Dubé & Vishal Singh, 2003. "Balancing Profitability and Customer Welfare in a Supermarket Chain," Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 111-147, March.
    9. Patrick DeGraba, 1995. "Buying Frenzies and Seller-Induced Excess Demand," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 26(2), pages 331-342, Summer.
    10. Bagwell, Kyle & Riordan, Michael H, 1991. "High and Declining Prices Signal Product Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 224-239, March.
    11. K. Sudhir, 2001. "Competitive Pricing Behavior in the US Auto Market: A Structural Analysis," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm228, Yale School of Management.
    12. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-890, July.
    13. Glen L. Urban & John R. Hauser & John H. Roberts, 1990. "Prelaunch Forecasting of New Automobiles," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(4), pages 401-421, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Pascal Courty & Javad Nasiry, 2016. "Product Launches and Buying Frenzies: A Dynamic Perspective," Production and Operations Management, Production and Operations Management Society, vol. 25(1), pages 143-152, January.
    2. Wen, Xiaoqin & Xu, Chen & Hu, Qiying, 2016. "Dynamic capacity management with uncertain demand and dynamic price," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 175(C), pages 121-131.
    3. Matzke, Andreas & Volling, Thomas & Spengler, Thomas S., 2016. "Upgrade auctions in build-to-order manufacturing with loss-averse customers," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 250(2), pages 470-479.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:55:y:2009:i:10:p:1623-1637. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/inforea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.