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Trial & Error to Collusion - The Discrete Case

  • Steffen Huck
  • Hans-Theo Normann
  • Jörg Oechssler

In this note we study a very simple trial & error learning process in the context of a Cournot oligopoly. Without any knowledge of the payoff functions players increase, respectively decrease, their quantity by one unit as long as this leads to higher profits. We show that despite the absence of any coordination or punishing device this process converges to a collusive outcome.

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File URL: http://www.wiwi.uni-bonn.de/bgsepapers/bonedp/bgse6_2000.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Bonn, Germany in its series Bonn Econ Discussion Papers with number bgse6_2000.

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Date of creation: May 2000
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Handle: RePEc:bon:bonedp:bgse6_2000
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bonn Graduate School of Economics, University of Bonn, Adenauerallee 24 - 26, 53113 Bonn, Germany
Fax: +49 228 73 6884
Web page: http://www.bgse.uni-bonn.de

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  1. Selten, Reinhard & Joachim Buchta, 1994. "Experimental Sealed Bid First Price Auctions with Directly Observed Bid Functions," Discussion Paper Serie B 270, University of Bonn, Germany.
  2. Huck, Steffen & Normann, Hans-Theo & Oechssler, Jorg, 1999. "Learning in Cournot Oligopoly--An Experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(454), pages C80-95, March.
  3. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1991. "Adaptive and sophisticated learning in normal form games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 82-100, February.
  4. Samuelson Larry, 1994. "Stochastic Stability in Games with Alternative Best Replies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 35-65, October.
  5. Fernando Vega Redondo, 1996. "The evolution of walrasian behavior," Working Papers. Serie AD 1996-05, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
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