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Price Dispersion with Directed Search

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  • Gabriele Camera
  • Cemil Selcuk

Abstract

We present a model that generates empirically plausible price distributions in directed search equilibrium. There are many identical buyers and many identical capacity-constrained sellers who post prices. These prices can be renegotiated to some degree and the outcome depends on the number of buyers who want to purchase the good. In equilibrium all sellers post the same price, demand is randomly distributed, and there is sale price dispersion. Prices and distributions depend on market tightness and on the properties of renegotiation outcomes. In a labor market context, the model generates a strong empirical prediction. if workers can renegotiate the posted wage, then the model predicts a positively skewed and realistic-looking density function of realized wages when the mean number of job-seekers per vacancy is large. (JEL: C780, D390, D490, E390) (c) 2009 by the European Economic Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Gabriele Camera & Cemil Selcuk, 2009. "Price Dispersion with Directed Search," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(6), pages 1193-1224, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:7:y:2009:i:6:p:1193-1224
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin Browning & Thomas F. Crossley & Guglielmo Weber, 2003. "Asking consumption questions in general purpose surveys," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(491), pages 540-567, November.
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    JEL classification:

    • C78 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Bargaining Theory; Matching Theory
    • D39 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Other
    • D49 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Other
    • E39 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Other

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