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A Dynamic Perspective on Minimum Quality Standards under Cournot Competition

  • Stefan Napel
  • Gunnar Oldehaver

Imposing a minimum quality standard (MQS) is conventionally regarded as harmful if firms compete in quantities. This, however, ignores its possible dynamic effects. We show that an MQS can hinder collusion, resulting in dynamic welfare gains that reduce and may outweigh the static losses which are caused by regulation's distortive effect on equilibrium qualities. Verdicts on MQS thus depend even more on the market structure at hand than has been acknowledged.

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Paper provided by Bavarian Graduate Program in Economics (BGPE) in its series Working Papers with number 082.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bav:wpaper:082_napel
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  1. Huck, Steffen & Normann, Hans-Theo & Oechssler, Jorg, 2004. "Two are few and four are many: number effects in experimental oligopolies," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 435-446, April.
  2. Garella, Paolo G., 2006. ""Innocuous" minimum quality standards," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(3), pages 368-374, September.
  3. repec:car:ciorup:90-04 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Chang, Myong-Hun, 1991. "The effects of product differentiation on collusive pricing," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 453-469, September.
  5. Paolo Garella & Emmanuel Petrakis, 2005. "Minimum Quality Standards and Consumers Information," Working Papers 0510, University of Crete, Department of Economics.
  6. Jehiel, Philippe, 1992. "Product differentiation and price collusion," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 633-641, December.
  7. Scarpa, Carlo, 1998. "Minimum quality standards with more than two firms1," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 665-676, September.
  8. Ross, Thomas W., 1992. "Cartel stability and product differentiation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 1-13, March.
  9. Motta, Massimo, 1993. "Endogenous Quality Choice: Price vs. Quantity Competition," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(2), pages 113-31, June.
  10. Argenton, Cédric, 2005. "Producers bargaining over a quality standard," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 618, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 18 Jan 2006.
  11. Crampes, Claude & Hollander, Abraham, 1995. "Duopoly and quality standards," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 71-82, January.
  12. Min Chen & Konstantinos Serfes, 2012. "Minimum quality standard regulation under imperfect quality observability," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 269-291, April.
  13. Giulio Ecchia & Luca Lambertini, 1995. "Minimum Quality Standards and Collusion," Working Papers 235, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
  14. Naoto Jinji & Tsuyoshi Toshimitsu, 2004. "Minimum Quality Standards under Asymmetric Duopoly with Endogenous Quality Ordering: A Note," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 189-199, 09.
  15. Eales James & Binkley James K, 2003. "Vertical Product Differentiation in Theory and Practice," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 1-18, September.
  16. Nash, John, 1950. "The Bargaining Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 18(2), pages 155-162, April.
  17. David Sappington, 2005. "Regulating Service Quality: A Survey," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 123-154, November.
  18. Valletti, Tommaso M, 2000. "Minimum Quality Standards under Cournot Competition," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 18(3), pages 235-45, November.
  19. Lutz, Stefan & Lyon, Thomas P & Maxwell, John W, 2000. "Quality Leadership When Regulatory Standards Are Forthcoming," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 331-48, September.
  20. Constantatos, Christos & Perrakis, Stylianos, 1998. "Minimum Quality Standards, Entry, and the Timing of the Quality Decision," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 47-58, January.
  21. Abreu, Dilip, 1986. "Extremal equilibria of oligopolistic supergames," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 191-225, June.
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