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Long-Term Contracting and Multiple-Price Systems

  • Hubbard, R Glenn
  • Weiner, Robert J

This article examines product markets in which long-term contracts and spot transactions coexist. Such markets are characterized by "multiple-price systems," wherein adjustment to supply and demand shocks occurs through spot prices, while contract prices are fixed or adjust slowly. The authors derive the existence of contracts, as well as the equilibrium fraction of spot trade, in the framework of an optimizing model and analyze the effects of shocks on market equilibrium when some buyers and sellers "locked in" contractually. The model is employed to interpret the change in the copper market from a multiple-price system to one characterized solely by spot trade. Copyright 1992 by University of Chicago Press.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Business.

Volume (Year): 65 (1992)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 177-98

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jnlbus:v:65:y:1992:i:2:p:177-98
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JB/

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  1. D. W. Carlton, 1976. "Market Behavior With Demand Uncertainty and Price Inflexibility," Working papers 179, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Carlton, Dennis W, 1979. "Vertical Integration in Competitive Markets under Uncertainty," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 189-209, March.
  3. Pratt, John W & Wise, David A & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1979. "Price Differences in Almost Competitive Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(2), pages 189-211, May.
  4. James G. MacKinnon & Nancy D. Olewiler, 1980. "Disequilibrium Estimation of the Demand for Copper," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 11(1), pages 197-211, Spring.
  5. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & BRUCE C. PETERSEN, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
  6. Hubbard, R Glenn & Weiner, Robert J, 1989. "Contracting and Price Adjustment in Commodity Markets: Evidence from Copper and Oil," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(1), pages 80-89, February.
  7. Hubbard, R Glenn, 1986. "Supply Shocks and Price Adjustment in the World Oil Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(1), pages 85-102, February.
  8. Gould, John P, 1978. "Inventories and Stochastic Demand: Equilibrium Models of the Firm and Industry," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(1), pages 1-42, January.
  9. Kawai, Masahiro, 1983. "Spot and Futures Prices of Nonsotrable Commodities under Rational Expectations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(2), pages 235-54, May.
  10. Robert E. Hall, 1984. "The Inefficiency of Marginal-Cost Pricing and The Apparent Rigidity of Prices," NBER Working Papers 1347, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Hubbard, R. Glenn & Weiner, Robert J., 1986. "Oil supply shocks and international policy coordination," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 91-106, February.
  12. McCafferty, Stephen & Driskill, Robert, 1980. "Problems of Existence and Uniqueness in Nonlinear Rational Expectations Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(5), pages 1313-17, July.
  13. Turnovsky, Stephen J, 1983. "The Determination of Spot and Futures Prices with Storable Commodities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(5), pages 1363-87, September.
  14. Newbery, David M., 1988. "On the accuracy of the mean-variance approximation for futures markets," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 63-68.
  15. Margaret E. Slade, 1991. "Strategic Pricing with Customer Rationing: The Case of Primary Metals," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 24(1), pages 70-100, February.
  16. Rotemberg, Julio J, 1982. "Sticky Prices in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1187-1211, December.
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