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Partial collusion with asymmetric cross-price effects

  • L. Savorelli

Asymmetries in cross-price elasticities have been demonstrated by several empirical studies. In this paper we study from a theoretical stance how introducing asymmetry in the substitution effects influences the sustainability of collusion. We characterize the equilibrium of a linear Cournot duopoly with substitute goods, and consider substitution effects which are asymmetric in magnitude. Within this framework, we study partial collusion using Friedman (1971) solution concept. Our main result shows that the interval of quantities supporting collusion in the asymmetric setting is always smaller than the interval in the symmetric benchmark. Thus, the asymmetry in the substitution effects makes collusion more difficult to sustain. This implies that previous Antitrust decisions could be reversed by considering the role of this kind of asymmetry.

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Paper provided by Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna in its series Working Papers with number 715.

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Date of creation: Oct 2010
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Handle: RePEc:bol:bodewp:715
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  1. Claude d'Aspremont & Alexis Jacquemin & Jean Jaskold Gabszewicz & John A. Weymark, 1983. "On the Stability of Collusive Price Leadership," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 16(1), pages 17-25, February.
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