Endogenous Market Thickness, Prices and Honesty: Quality Demand Traps
We study the interaction between product quality, prices and demand in a dynamic model of asymmetric information. Sellers choose between producing high quality goods which gives low profits today but increases probability of future survival in the market and low quality ones which gives higher returns today but lowers future survival. However, demand depends on expected quality. Multiple steady states (high demand high quality, low demand low quality) exist if the present discounted value of lifetime profits from selling high quality goods exceeds a certain cutoff. We also characterise the equilibrium price which depends on the distribution of buyer valuations.
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