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Credible collusion in multimarket oligopoly

  • Timothy L. Sorenson

    (Department of Economics, Albers School of Business and Economics, Seattle University, Washington, USA)

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    This article refines an established explanation of how multimarket contact facilitates collusion when firms enjoy reciprocal advantages across markets: When there are reciprocal asymmetries between firms, multimarket contact allows them not only to develop spheres of influence, but also to implement attractively simple strategies that are subgame perfect and weakly renegotiation proof. Hence, collusive equilibria are supported by fully credible punishments. A significant implication is, multimarket contact involving reciprocal differences between firms may be more facilitating to their cooperative efforts than multimarket contact based on other factors. The article discusses existing empirical work as it relates to this implication. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/mde.1314
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    Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Managerial and Decision Economics.

    Volume (Year): 28 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 115-128

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    Handle: RePEc:wly:mgtdec:v:28:y:2007:i:2:p:115-128
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/7976

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    1. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine & Eric Maskin, 1994. "The Folk Theorem with Imperfect Public Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2058, David K. Levine.
    2. Demougin, Dominique & Fishman, Arthur, 1991. "Efficient Budget Balancing Cartel Equilibria with Imperfect Monitoring," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 1(4), pages 373-83, October.
    3. Evans, Robert & Maskin, Eric, 1989. "Efficient renegotiation--proof equilibria in repeated games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(4), pages 361-369, December.
    4. Matsushima, Hitoshi, 2001. "Multimarket Contact, Imperfect Monitoring, and Implicit Collusion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 158-178, May.
    5. Scott, John T, 1982. "Multimarket Contact and Economic Performance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(3), pages 368-75, August.
    6. MacLeod, B.W. & Bergin, J., 1991. "Efficiency and Renegotiation in Repeated Games," Cahiers de recherche 9118, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
    7. Feinberg, Robert M., 1984. "Mutual forbearance as an extension of oligopoly theory," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 243-249, May.
    8. Owen R. Phillips & Charles F. Mason, 1992. "Mutual Forbearance in Experimental Conglomerate Markets," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(3), pages 395-414, Autumn.
    9. Green, Edward J. & Porter, Robert H., 1982. "Noncooperative Collusion Under Imperfect Price Information," Working Papers 367, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
    10. Joseph Farrell and Eric Maskin., 1987. "Renegotiation in Repeated Games," Economics Working Papers 8759, University of California at Berkeley.
    11. Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2005. "Managerial incentives and collusive behavior," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1501-1523, August.
    12. Douglas Bernheim, B. & Ray, Debraj, 1989. "Collective dynamic consistency in repeated games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(4), pages 295-326, December.
    13. Meghan R. Busse, 2000. "Multimarket Contact and Price Coordination in the Cellular Telephone Industry," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(3), pages 287-320, 06.
    14. David G. Pearce, 1987. "Renegotiation-Proof Equilibria: Collective Rationality and Intertemporal Cooperation," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 855, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    15. Abreu, Dilip, 1986. "Extremal equilibria of oligopolistic supergames," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 191-225, June.
    16. Fernandez, Nerea & Marin, Pedro L, 1998. "Market Power and Multimarket Contact: Some Evidence from the Spanish Hotel Industry," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(3), pages 301-15, September.
    17. Hughes, Kirsty & Oughton, Christine, 1993. "Diversification, Multi-market Contact and Profitability," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 60(238), pages 203-24, May.
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