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Deregulating Network Industries: Dealing with Price-quality Tradeoffs

  • Stefan Buehler

    ()

  • Dennis Gärtner

    ()

  • Daniel Halbheer

    ()

This paper examines the effects of introducing competition into monopolized network industries on prices and infrastructure quality. Analyzing a model with reduced-form demand, we first show that deregulating an integrated monopoly cannot simultaneously decrease the retail price and increase infrastructure quality. Second, we derive conditions under which reducing both retail price and infrastructure quality relative to the integrated monopoly outcome increases welfare. Third, we argue that restructuring and setting very low access charges may yield welfare losses, as infrastructure investment is undermined. We provide an extensive analysis of the linear demand model and discuss policy implications. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11149-006-0011-8
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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Regulatory Economics.

Volume (Year): 30 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (07)
Pages: 99-115

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Handle: RePEc:kap:regeco:v:30:y:2006:i:1:p:99-115
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100298

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  1. A. Michael Spence, 1975. "Monopoly, Quality, and Regulation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(2), pages 417-429, Autumn.
  2. Jean Tirole, 1988. "The Theory of Industrial Organization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262200716, June.
  3. Buehler, Stefan & Schmutzler, Armin & Benz, Men-Andri, 2004. "Infrastructure quality in deregulated industries: is there an underinvestment problem?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 253-267, February.
  4. Mandy, David M, 2000. "Killing the Goose That May Have Laid the Golden Egg: Only the Data Know Whether Sabotage Pays," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 17(2), pages 157-72, March.
  5. David Mandy & David Sappington, 2007. "Incentives for sabotage in vertically related industries," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 31(3), pages 235-260, June.
  6. Reiffen, David, 1998. "A Regulated Firm's Incentive to Discriminate: A Reevaluation and Extension of Weisman's Result," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 79-86, July.
  7. Weisman, Dennis L & Kang, Jaesung, 2001. "Incentives for Discrimination when Upstream Monopolists Participate in Downstream Markets," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 125-39, September.
  8. Beard, T Randolph & Kaserman, David L & Mayo, John W, 2001. "Regulation, Vertical Integration and Sabotage," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(3), pages 319-33, September.
  9. Spence, A Michael, 1977. "Nonprice Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(1), pages 255-59, February.
  10. Newbery, D., 1996. "Privatisation and Liberalisation of Network Utilities," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9620, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  11. Economides, Nicholas, 1998. "The incentive for non-price discrimination by an input monopolist," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 271-284, May.
  12. Severin Borenstein, 2002. "The Trouble With Electricity Markets: Understanding California's Restructuring Disaster," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(1), pages 191-211, Winter.
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