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"Bru-u-u-uce": The Simple Economics of Mob Goods


  • DeSerpa, Allan C
  • Faith, Roger L


This paper provides a pure economic rationale for chronic excess demand for tickets to events like rock concerts. The model focuses on 'mob goods,' which are consumed jointly with crowd reaction, or 'noise.' Whereas the primary commodity is provided by the seller, the joint product is provided collectively by buyers. If propensities to make noise are inversely correlated with reservation prices and a capacity constraint applies, excess demand (queuing) is a necessary condition for profit maximization. One important implication is that antiscalping laws may be welfare-increasing. The paper explores other applications in professional sports, restaurants, and on-stage theatre. Copyright 1996 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • DeSerpa, Allan C & Faith, Roger L, 1996. ""Bru-u-u-uce": The Simple Economics of Mob Goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 89(1-2), pages 77-91, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:89:y:1996:i:1-2:p:77-91

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & William Easterly, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1243-1284.
    2. Sass, Tim R, 1991. "The Choice of Municipal Government Structure and Public Expenditures," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 71(1-2), pages 71-87, August.
    3. Bradbury, John Charles & Crain, W. Mark, 2001. "Legislative organization and government spending: cross-country evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(3), pages 309-325, December.
    4. Weingast, Barry R & Shepsle, Kenneth A & Johnsen, Christopher, 1981. "The Political Economy of Benefits and Costs: A Neoclassical Approach to Distributive Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 642-664, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Büch, Martin-Peter & Maennig, Wolfgang & Schulke, Hans-Jürgen (ed.), 2012. "Sport und Sportgroßveranstaltungen in Europa - zwischen Zentralstaat und Regionen," Edition HWWI, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI), volume 4, number 4.
    2. Hendrik Sonnabend, 2016. "Fairness constraints on profit-seeking: evidence from the German club concert industry," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 40(4), pages 529-545, November.
    3. Busch, Lutz-Alexander & Curry, Philip A., 2011. "Ticket pricing and the impression of excess demand," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 111(1), pages 40-42, April.
    4. Phillip Leslie & Alan Sorensen, 2009. "The Welfare Effects of Ticket Resale," NBER Working Papers 15476, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Courty, Pascal & Pagliero, Mario, 2012. "The Pricing of Art and the Art of Pricing: Pricing Styles in the Concert Industry," CEPR Discussion Papers 8967, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Henk Folmer & Auke Leen, 2013. "Why do successful restaurants not raise their prices?," Letters in Spatial and Resource Sciences, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 81-90, July.
    7. repec:kap:jculte:v:41:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10824-016-9272-y is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Nick Vikander, 2011. "Capacity Constraints and Beliefs about Demand," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-015/1, Tinbergen Institute.
    9. Dietl, Helmut & Duschl, Tobias, 2012. "The organization of professional sports leagues: A comparison of European and North-American leagues from the perspective of platform organization," Edition HWWI: Chapters,in: Sport und Sportgroßveranstaltungen in Europa - zwischen Zentralstaat und Regionen, pages 111-126 Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).

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