IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Competition and Allocative Efficiency: The Case of the U.S. Telephone Industry


  • Oum, Tae Hoon
  • Zhang, Yimin


This study investigates the effect of competition on the productive efficiency of the U.S. telephone industry, taking into account the fact that the industry was subject to rate-of-return regulation. It is shown that competition induces the incumbents to use capital inputs closer to the unconstrained optima, thereby reducing the allocative inefficiency caused by the Averch-Johnson effect. This effect is in addition to the usual technical efficiency improvement induced by competition. Empirical results, based on annual data for the U.S. telephone industry for the 1951-90 period, suggested that competition improved the allocative efficiency of the incumbent firms which had been under a rate-of-return regulation until 1989. Copyright 1995 by MIT Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Oum, Tae Hoon & Zhang, Yimin, 1995. "Competition and Allocative Efficiency: The Case of the U.S. Telephone Industry," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(1), pages 82-96, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:77:y:1995:i:1:p:82-96

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to JSTOR subscribers. See for details.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lillard, Lee A, 1977. "Inequality: Earnings vs. Human Wealth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 42-53, March.
    2. Bishop, John Hillman, 1989. "Is the Test Score Decline Responsible for the Productivity Growth Decline?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 178-197, March.
    3. Thomas J. Kane & Cecilia E. Rouse, 1993. "Labor Market Returns to Two- And Four-Year College: Is a Credit a Credit And Do Degrees Matter?," Working Papers 690, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    4. Blackburn, McKinley L & Neumark, David, 1993. "Omitted-Ability Bias and the Increase in the Return to Schooling," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(3), pages 521-544, July.
    5. Thomas J. Kane & Cecilia Rouse, 1993. "Labor Market Returns to Two- And Four-Year College: Is A Credit a Credit And Do Degrees Matter?," Working Papers 690, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    6. repec:fth:prinin:311 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Levy, Frank & Murnane, Richard J, 1992. "U.S. Earnings Levels and Earnings Inequality: A Review of Recent Trends and Proposed Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1333-1381, September.
    8. McKinley L. Blackburn & David E. Bloom & Richard B. Freeman, 1989. "The Declining Economic Position of Less-Skilled American Males," NBER Working Papers 3186, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-442, June.
    10. Bound, John & Griliches, Zvi & Hall, Bronwyn H, 1986. "Wages, Schooling and IQ of Brothers and Sisters: Do the Family Factors Differ?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 27(1), pages 77-105, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Peilei Fan, 2011. "Innovation capacity and economic development: China and India," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 49-73, April.
    2. Badunenko, Oleg & Fritsch, Michael & Stephan, Andreas, 2008. "Allocative efficiency measurement revisited--Do we really need input prices?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 1093-1109, September.
    3. Rodríguez-Álvarez, Ana & Fernandez, Victor & Lovell, Knox, 2003. "Allocative Inefficiency and its Cost: The Case of the Spanish Public Hospitals," Efficiency Series Papers 2003/04, University of Oviedo, Department of Economics, Oviedo Efficiency Group (OEG).
    4. Bitzan, John & Peoples, James, 2014. "U.S. air carriers and work-rule constraints – Do airlines employ an allocatively efficient mix of inputs?," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 9-17.
    5. Nongluk Buranabunyut & James Peoples, 2012. "An empirical analysis of incentive regulation and the allocation of inputs in the US telecommunications industry," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 181-200, April.
    6. Balk, Bert M., 1997. "The decomposition of cost efficiency and the canonical form of cost function and cost share equations," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 45-51, August.
    7. Burki, Abid A. & Khan, Mahmood-ul-Hasan, 2004. "Effects of allocative inefficiency on resource allocation and energy substitution in Pakistan's manufacturing," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 371-388, May.
    8. Halkos, George & Tzeremes, Nickolaos, 2011. "A conditional full frontier approach for investigating the Averch-Johnson effect," MPRA Paper 35491, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Gary Madden & Scott J. Savage & Jason Ng, 2003. "Asia-Pacific Telecommunications Liberalisation and Productivity Performance," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(1), pages 91-102, March.
    10. Wilson, Wesley W. & Zhou, Yimin, 2001. "Telecommunications deregulation and subadditive costs: Are local telephone monopolies unnatural?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 909-930, May.
    11. Bouras, Hela & Fekih, Bouthaina Soussi, 2013. "Quality institutional reform and economic performance: Case of telecommunications in the MENA region," MPRA Paper 55888, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    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:tpr:restat:v:77:y:1995:i:1:p:82-96. 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: (Kristin Waites). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.