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Ticket Pricing

Listed author(s):
  • Rosen, Sherwin
  • Rosenfield, Andrew M
Registered author(s):

Price discrimination among ticket service classes is analyzed when aggregate demand is known and individual preferences are private information. Serving customers in cheap second-class seats limits the seller's ability to extract surplus from expensive first-class seats because some switch to the lower class. Discrimination is greatest in the class with the largest variance in demand prices. The seller's incentives to limit substitution by altering the between-class quality spread and the pricing of complementary (concession) goods are also analyzed. These issues depend on comparing "marginal" with "average" customers parallel to the provision of public goods. Finally, when capacity limitations require sequential servicing of buyers in "batches" (for example, theatrical productions), intertemporal price discrimination requires prices to decline over time, so customers with the greatest demand prices buy higher-priced tickets to earlier performances rather than wait for later performances. The rational policy can generate queues for early performances. Copyright 1997 by the University of Chicago.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/467376
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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Law & Economics.

Volume (Year): 40 (1997)
Issue (Month): 2 (October)
Pages: 351-376

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:v:40:y:1997:i:2:p:351-76
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JLE/

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  1. Jean Tirole, 1988. "The Theory of Industrial Organization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262200716, September.
  2. Lott, John R, Jr & Roberts, Russell D, 1991. "A Guide to the Pitfalls of Identifying Price Discrimination," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 29(1), pages 14-23, January.
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  6. Eric Maskin & John Riley, 1984. "Monopoly with Incomplete Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(2), pages 171-196, Summer.
  7. Crew, Michael A & Fernando, Chitru S & Kleindorfer, Paul R, 1995. "The Theory of Peak-Load Pricing: A Survey," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 215-248, November.
  8. Mussa, Michael & Rosen, Sherwin, 1978. "Monopoly and product quality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 301-317, August.
  9. William James Adams & Janet L. Yellen, 1976. "Commodity Bundling and the Burden of Monopoly," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 90(3), pages 475-498.
  10. Locay, Luis & Rodriguez, Alvaro, 1992. "Price Discrimination in Competitive Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 954-965, October.
  11. Jeremy Bulow, 1986. "An Economic Theory of Planned Obsolescence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(4), pages 729-749.
  12. Kahn, Charles M, 1986. "The Durable Goods Monopolist and Consistency with Increasing Costs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(2), pages 275-294, March.
  13. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan & Michael D. Whinston, 1989. "Multiproduct Monopoly, Commodity Bundling, and Correlation of Values," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(2), pages 371-383.
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