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The Determinants of Network Television Program Prices: Implicit Contracts, Regulation, and Bargaining Power


  • John R. Woodbury
  • Stanley M. Besen
  • Gary M. Fournier


Recently, the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice have imposed detailed regulatory schemes governing the contractual relationship between the commercial television networks and program suppliers. This article provides empirical evidence on the determinants of program prices that indicates that the claims underlying the adoption of these regulations are unfounded. Although the network-supplier contract appears to place obligations only on suppliers, our analysis suggests that networks assume an implicit obligation to adjust program prices in response to improved information about program performance.

Suggested Citation

  • John R. Woodbury & Stanley M. Besen & Gary M. Fournier, 1983. "The Determinants of Network Television Program Prices: Implicit Contracts, Regulation, and Bargaining Power," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 14(2), pages 351-365, Autumn.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:bellje:v:14:y:1983:i:autumn:p:351-365

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